Bonanza Wiki
Bonanza episode
“The Lila Conrad Story”
Season 5, Episode 14
#148 in Series
Normal TLCS-AJ-guests-1-kl
Air date January 5, 1964
Production code
Guest starring:
Written by Preston Wood

George Waggner

Directed by Tay Garnett
Episode Guide
Previous Episode:
The Prime of Life
Next Episode:
Ponderosa Matador
External links
The Lila Conrad Story on IMDb


Adam and Little Joe try to find a fair trial for a saloon girl accused of theft and murder, hiding her from a corrupt sheriff's lynch mob after she stows away in the back of their supply wagon, all while escorting a self-righteous, hard-nosed judge to Virginia City.


Joe and Adam are on their way to Virginia City, leaving the wild town of Silver Hills. They are driving supply wagons, accompanying Judge Knowlton and his wife. Joe discovers a saloon girl, Lila Conrad, hiding in the back of his supply wagon. She tells Joe that some men are after her to kill her, so Joe lets her stay in the wagon. She killed a barroom customer in self defense and is hiding from the dead man's buddies who have formed a lynch mob.

Judge Knowlton, a rigid and merciless man, traveling with his wife at first disapproves of Lila and the Cartwrights’ attempt to help her. Gradually, he falls for Lila, believing that he is the only one who can save her from her corrupt lifestyle and from the men chasing her. The judge begins sitting next to Lila, letting his own wife sit next to Adam on his supply wagon. The judge talks to Lila all day, convincing her to give herself up to atone for all her past mistakes. Joe and Adam can tell it was a clear case of self defense and are worried Lila won’t get a fair trial back in Silver Hills.

During the evening, two deputies show up where the wagons are bedded down for the night. They have come to take Lila back to Silver Hills. Adam convinces them to wait until daybreak to give everyone a rest. Judge Knowlton takes off in the middle of the night with Lila and their absence is discovered in the morning by the judge’s wife, Sarah. The deputies, followed by Joe, track the judge and Lila. When the deputies catch up to them, they find the judge and Lila have been slowed by a lame horse.

It is revealed to Joe then that the deputies are actually brothers of the dead man back in Silver Hills and they want to kill Lila. Lila discovers the judge is actually running away with Lila to have her all to himself. Lila begins laughing at him, saying he is no different than any other man who wants her. The judge, being distracted by Lila, gets shot by one of the brothers. Joe is able to get the other brother’s gun and kills one of them. Joe, Lila, the judge, and the remaining brother return to camp, where Adam and Sarah wait. The judge reunites with his patient wife and Lila is promised fair treatment under the law in Virginia a city.

Cast and Characters[]

The Cartwrights[]


  • Andrew Duggan: Judge David Knowlton
  • Cathy O'Donnell: Sarah Knowlton
  • C. Lindsay Workman: Mr. Jarvis
  • Don Haggerty: Dolph Rimbeau
  • Don Kelly: Arnie Rimbeau
  • Don Wilbanks: Deputy Bob Hagen
  • Patricia Blair: Lila Conrad
  • Scott Peters: Gabe Rimbeau
  • Stuart Randall: Sheriff Cogan


Did you know?[]

  • German episode title: "Lila Conrad und der Richter", meaning "Lila Conrad and the Judge".




See also[]