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The Marshal of Mesa City (1939)

School teacher Virginia King, annoyed by the unwanted attentions from Mesa City sheriff Jud Cronin, resigns and departs for Yuma. Her stagecoach is attacked by a gang led be Cronin's ... See full summary »


David Howard


Jack Lait Jr. (screenplay)




Complete credited cast:
George O'Brien ... Cliff Mason
Virginia Vale ... Virginia King
Leon Ames ... Sheriff Jud Cronin
Henry Brandon ... Duke Allison
Harry Cording ... Bat Cardigan - Henchman
Lloyd Ingraham ... Mayor Sam Bentley
Slim Whitaker ... Jake Morris - Henchman
Joe McGuinn ... Pete Henderson - Henchman
Mary Gordon ... Mrs. Dudley
Frank Ellis Frank Ellis ... Slim - Henchman


School teacher Virginia King, annoyed by the unwanted attentions from Mesa City sheriff Jud Cronin, resigns and departs for Yuma. Her stagecoach is attacked by a gang led be Cronin's henchman Pete Henderson, trying to force her to return to Mesa City. Ex-lawman Cliff Mason comes along and disarms and unmasks the outlaws. It will take several days to repair the coach and Cliff takes Virginia back to Mesa City. Cliff identifies the outlaws, but Marshal Andy Thompson is killed trying to arrest Henderson, who makes a getaway. Mayor Sam Bentley appoints Cliff marshal pro tem. Cliff arrests the outlaws but Judge Wainwright is on Cronin's payroll and sets them free. Cliff persuades the city council to pass a law forbidding the carrying of firearms by others than officers of the law. Cronin sends for Duke Allison, notorious gunman, to deal with Cliff, but Cliff saves Duke's life and Duke accepts a deputy marshal's badge from Cliff. Cronin arrests Cliff and Duke for the killing of Henderson, ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


GEORGE O'BRIEN in a drama of the dangerous West of old!! See more »


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Release Date:

3 November 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Carga de Valentes See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Cliff Mason: I know that breed. They don't like to fight unless they have the drop on someone.
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Edited into Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch (1976) See more »


Oh! Susanna
(1848) (uncredited)
Written by Stephen Foster
Whistled by Henry Brandon and Leon Ames
Played by the band at the second dance
See more »

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User Reviews

Systemic corruption in a western town
24 September 2012 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

George O'Brien stars in The Marshal Of Mesa City as a Wyatt Earp type figure who is drafted reluctantly to cleaning up said town by the good citizens. The Doc Holiday of the film is Henry Brandon who plays a notorious gunslinger who aligns himself with O'Brien.

The corruption is systemic in Mesa City, the actual leader of the outlaws is sheriff Leon Ames, he's the county sheriff and O'Brien is the town marshal, just like John Behan and Virgil Earp in real life. Ames is a pretty shrewd villain and he's got quite a few tricks up his sleeve. He's also got a Snidely Whiplash like interest in the town school teacher Virginia Vale. That alone puts him in direct conflict with O'Brien.

Playing a nice role is the screen's greatest mother figure of the time Mary Gordon who runs the boarding house where Vale lives and who does her best to get O'Brien and Vale together. It seemed like Gordon who is known mostly for being Mrs. Hudson in the Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes mysteries was everyone's dear little Irish mother on screen though she came from Scotland. She's quite the little cupid here.

The Marshal Of Mesa City is a nice no frills B western from RKO that holds up a lot better than some of the singing cowboys of the day in terms of structure and plot.

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