Bordertown Gun Fighters


56m 1943

Brief Synopsis

Cameo Shelby is running a crooked lottery out of El Paso and treasury agent Bill Elliott has been sent to break it up. When Bill intercepts a shipment of tickets to New Mexico he forces Shelby to send incriminating papers in the next shipment. Bill captures these also and now has the evidence he needs to go after Shelby.

Film Details

Release Date
Jul 8, 1943
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 24 Jun 1943
Production Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
56m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
5,002ft (6 reels)

Synopsis

Cowboys Wild Bill Elliott and Gabby Hayes make camp one night near El Paso, Texas and witness the murder of New Mexican official Roland Clark. They are arrested for the killing by deputy sheriff Jack Gatling, who is actually one of the gang who murdered Clark. U.S. Marshal Dave Strickland comes to the El Paso jail to retrieve Bill and Gabby, who he says must stand trial in New Mexico. Before they leave, Dave demands the official papers that Clark was carrying, which Bill saw before being arrested. Gatling declares that the papers do not exist and so Dave takes Gabby and Bill away. Gabby is amazed to learn that his pal Bill, who he thought was a gambler, is actually a Secret Service undercover operative. Dave reveals that Clark was taking the papers to Washington, D.C. to expose the working of the Lone Star Lottery, a crooked gambling ring that has been taking advantage of New Mexican residents. The fake lottery is run by Cameo Shelby, for whom Gatling works as a hired gun. After a trip to D.C. to confer with Secret Service chief Daniel Forrester, Bill and Gabby return to El Paso to begin their investigation. On the train back, they meet Shelby's pretty niece Anita, who is going to work as a singer in her uncle's saloon. The meeting is unfortunate, for when Anita innocently reveals to Shelby that she saw Bill and Gabby on the train from Washington, he becomes suspicious of their story that they came from New Mexico after being released for lack of evidence in the Clark murder case. Shelby sends Gatling to Santa Fe to investigate, and later, Bill does some snooping of his own in Shelby's office and learns that Frank Holden is to transport that month's shipment of lottery tickets. Gabby takes it upon himself to go to Holden's tannery to search for the tickets, but the criminals catch him and knock him out. While searching for Gabby, Bill follows the trail as Gabby is taken to Las Palmas with the tickets, and on the way rescues him and confiscates the tickets. Anxious to send out another supply of tickets, as well as the protection money he pays to prominient officials, Shelby decides to use the unwitting Anita. He slips the money and tickets in her saddlebag, but Bill stops her and finds them, as well as an incriminating list of Shelby's contacts, for which Clark was killed. As Bill is discussing the situation with Anita, Gatling returns from Santa Fe and tells Shelby that Bill is an undercover agent and never stood trial in New Mexico. Shelby then orders Gatling to arrest Bill again and make sure that he is killed while resisting arrest. Gabby and Dave learn of their plans, however, and after warning Bill, prepare for a showdown. Dave is wounded during the shootout, while Bill succeeds in shooting Gatling. Shelby attempts to escape but falls off a cliff to his death while being pursued by Bill. Later, Anita accompanies Bill and Gabby to Washington, where Bill receives a medal of valor for his brave actions.

Film Details

Release Date
Jul 8, 1943
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 24 Jun 1943
Production Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
56m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
5,002ft (6 reels)

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Although George "Gabby" Hayes's character is usually known as "Gabby Whittaker" in the Wild Bill Elliott and Roy Rogers films, in this picture he is called "Gabby Hayes." Although a Hollywood Reporter production chart includes Pierre Watkin in the cast, his participation in the completed film has not been confirmed. The Motion Picture Herald Prod Digest review, which listed the title as Bordertown Gunfighters, noted that Republic was sending out the film on a double bill with a re-issue of a 1937 Gene Autry picture called Boots and Saddles, in which Bill Elliott, under the name of Gordon Elliott, played the villain. Modern sources include the following actors in the cast: Edward Keane, Frank McCarroll, Neal Hart, Frosty Royce, Marshall Reed, Bill Wolfe, Rose Plumer, Al Haskell, Foxy O'Callahan, Buck Bucko and Jim Massey.