The BEST episodes of How the West Was Won

Every episode of How the West Was Won ever, ranked from best to worst by thousands of votes from fans of the show. The best episodes of How the West Was Won!

Family Macahan's is the story of the white man's conquest of the American West, which we follow through family Macahan valiant struggle for survival. It is the story of mountain men who went west to explore the world beyond the next river bend, the fur trappers who nearly extinct buffalo herds, the gold graves searching for El Dorado, about peasants who became wealthy landowners and the simple people who were on the run. There is also a story about the American Indians. Brave and fearless, but hopelessly outnumbered, these primitive people were the ultimate losers in the battle for land in the west.

Last Updated: 6/17/2024Network: ABC (US)Status: Ended
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Interlude
star
7.74
19 votes

#1 - Interlude

Season 2 - Episode 3 - Aired 2/26/1978

Luke's attempt to foil the Flint gang's gold robbery scheme doesn't go as planned. Zeb rescues a woman from two hide-cutters and is surprised to find a love from his past. When a certain guest arrives for Laura's wedding, second thoughts arise. Jessie fights for her life after being stung by a swarm of bees.

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Orville Gant
star
7.61
23 votes

#2 - Orville Gant

Season 2 - Episode 4 - Aired 3/5/1978

With the sheriff's son held hostage by Flint, the robbery goes forward, leaving two men dead. Jessie's condition worsens as the doctor can't help her. Zeb's and Beth's accounts of her rescue come under suspicion by authorities, causing her to leave abruptly, with her leading Zeb to a mountain cabin.

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Bowie John Christie
star
7.57
21 votes

#3 - Bowie John Christie

Season 1 - Episode 3 - Aired 2/20/1977

Zeb must make the hardest choice in his life when attempting to save the life of his friend who has been taken captive by the Indians. Luke realizes that he can not stay with the Simonites after more trouble has erupted and the consequences are horrible when Erika decides to follow him. Meanwhile, back on the farm, the rest of the family finds itself in the midst of an Indian tribal war. And at the same time Captain Grey, now turned bounty hunter, continues to search for Luke.

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The Slavers
star
7.56
9 votes

#4 - The Slavers

Season 3 - Episode 11 - Aired 4/23/1979

Directors: Joseph Pevney
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Mormon Story
star
7.52
21 votes

#5 - Mormon Story

Season 2 - Episode 2 - Aired 2/19/1978

Zeb sides with the Sioux after the Russian incident triggers a war - and the clash leads to a great leader's sacrifice. Luke's feelings for Hillary Gant intensify, but when her father learns of Luke's past, he asks Luke to leave. Laura accepts a marriage proposal, while Luke finds himself forced to join a thieving band of ex-Confederates.

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Amnesty
star
7.47
17 votes

#6 - Amnesty

Season 2 - Episode 5 - Aired 3/12/1978

Zeb learns Beth's husband is supposedly a dead, guilt-ridden Army hero involved in a military massacre. As Jessie nears death, Zeb decides to take her to an Arapaho medicine man - with a skeptical Luke and Josh in close pursuit.

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Cattle Drive
star
7.38
13 votes

#7 - Cattle Drive

Season 2 - Episode 6 - Aired 3/19/1978

Jessie recovers with the help of the Aapaho, but the tribe finds itself on the brink of starvation due to the broken promise of beef shipments. Zeb and Luke embark on a cattle-herding journey across harsh flatlands, joined by contentious Indian drovers - and trailed by a young runaway.

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The Gunfighter
star
7.25
12 votes

#8 - The Gunfighter

Season 3 - Episode 1 - Aired 1/15/1979

Rancher Henry Coe hires a professional gunman to drive the Macahans off what he considers to be his property. Frank Grayson ingratiates himself with the Macahans, but Josh recognizes him as the gunman once hired to kill Luke.

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The Rustler
star
7.25
12 votes

#9 - The Rustler

Season 3 - Episode 2 - Aired 1/22/1979

Jessie is blindly in love with a handsome young stranger named Bob, who rescues her from a nasty villain. Together they flee to a small town and finds a priest who agrees to perform the ceremony.

Directors: Barry Crane
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Robber's Roost
star
7.23
13 votes

#10 - Robber's Roost

Season 2 - Episode 7 - Aired 3/26/1978

On the journey home, the stagecoach carrying Molly and Jessie is wrecked - and a dazed Jessie wanders into the desert, where she meets the young Navajo Teel-O. Zeb and Josh purchase a cattle herd to bring back to the reservation, and Zeb hires old friend Tap Henry to serve as cook on the drive.

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China Girl
star
7.22
9 votes

#11 - China Girl

Season 3 - Episode 10 - Aired 4/16/1979

Directors: Joseph Pevney
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star
7.21
14 votes

#12 - Gold

Season 2 - Episode 10 - Aired 4/23/1978

Luke is jailed pending his hearing, and from his cell, gives a newspaper interview that draws trouble to Las Mesas. Apaches disrupt the cattle drive. Jessie is rescued, and she and the others return home to find gold in the Machan creek - just as Deek becomes more neighborly.

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The Innocent
star
7.20
10 votes

#13 - The Innocent

Season 3 - Episode 4 - Aired 2/12/1979

Josh is friends with Cora Johnson and her children, who are operators of a ferry service. In this way he becomes embroiled in a dispute over ferry operations, and the conflict takes an unpleasant turn when capital borrowings by Cora's retarded son is accused of murder.

Directors: Alf Kjellin
Writer: Ray Goldrup
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Provost Marshal
star
7.13
62 votes

#14 - Provost Marshal

Season 1 - Episode 1 - Aired 2/6/1977

Luke is on the run from Captain Grey who wants to arrest him for deserting from the Union Army. Luke gets shot when trying to prevent some men harassing a woman and is later taken care of by a group of Simonites. Zeb searches for Luke so the family can continue the journey towards Oregon.

Directors: Bernard McEveety
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Erika
star
7.03
30 votes

#15 - Erika

Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired 2/13/1977

Zeb finds Luke with the Simonites but before Luke is strong enough to leave, Zeb must take the opportunity to find a friend who has started a vendetta against an Indian tribe. Luke has taken a liking for the lifestyle of the Simonites and especially for the young and beautiful Erika who has looked after him. He therefore contemplates the option of becoming a Simonite.

Directors: Burt Kennedy
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Deek
star
7.00
10 votes

#16 - Deek

Season 2 - Episode 8 - Aired 4/9/1978

Deek Peasley is reluctantly hired to lead the search party for Jessie, who tries to bridge the language gap with Teel-O. The cattle drive gets underway, shadowed by Tap's rustler cronies. While camping out, tensions mount between Deek and Molly, and a costly bargain is negotiated.

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Hillary
star
7.00
13 votes

#17 - Hillary

Season 3 - Episode 5 - Aired 2/26/1979

Luke embarks on a double mission: to win back his old flame Hillary and find the man who is suspected of murder as Luke once accused of - and to get him to confess.

Directors: Irving J. Moore
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star
7.00
13 votes

#18 - The Judge

Season 2 - Episode 9 - Aired 4/16/1978

Jessie and Teel-O have a fateful encounter with Teel-O's grandfather. While scouting for water, Luke comes to the rescue of Judge Rensen, who offers to seek a pardon for Luke's criminal past in Missouri. Teel-O and Jessie are stalked be would-be slavers.

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The Scavengers
star
6.93
14 votes

#19 - The Scavengers

Season 3 - Episode 7 - Aired 3/12/1979

The Macahans are out on a riverboat when the boat is attacked by river pirats.

Directors: Ralph Senensky
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Buffalo Story
star
6.91
23 votes

#20 - Buffalo Story

Season 2 - Episode 1 - Aired 2/12/1978

Kate Macahan's sister, Molly Culhane, joins the family. A Mormon family arrives at the homestead while fleeing religious persecution, but the patriarch soon charms Laura. Zeb mediates between the Army and the angry Sioux after a Russian royalty kills a buffalo on Sioux land. Luke aids a local sheriff and meets his feisty daughter.

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The Enemy
star
6.90
10 votes

#21 - The Enemy

Season 3 - Episode 3 - Aired 2/5/1979

A by-the-book Army lieutenant clashes with the Macahans when he hunts for an Indian chief suspected of raiding wagon trains.

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The Forgotten
star
6.89
9 votes

#22 - The Forgotten

Season 3 - Episode 8 - Aired 3/19/1979

Army surveyors led by Luke Macahon is ambushed and shot at in the mountains by an unknown person.

Directors: Barry Crane
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Luke
star
6.89
9 votes

#23 - Luke

Season 3 - Episode 9 - Aired 4/2/1979

Luke Macahan finds out that there is still a $5000 reward on his head, and to expect more and more bounty hunters as an effect off that fact.

Directors: Vincent McEveety
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L'Affaire Riel
star
6.73
11 votes

#24 - L'Affaire Riel

Season 3 - Episode 6 - Aired 3/5/1979

Zeb Macahan is asked by general Sheridan to find Louis Riel so he can be sent back to Canada since he is wanted.

Directors: Harry Falk
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star
6.67
9 votes

#25 - The Posse

Season 2 - Episode 14 - Aired 5/21/1978

Fleeing jail with Josh, Luke finds Judge Rensen dead. When the brothers split up after narrowly eluding the posse, Josh is attacked and Zeb's pursuit ends in a face off with Stillman. The cattle drive regroups and makes a final homeward push. Deek menaces Laura and Molly for the last time.

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