Ep.7 - The Prize

  Original Airdate: October 25, 1973
Writer: Dale Eunson
Director: Philip Leacock


  "Sunday afternoon on Walton's Mountain was a time of quiet contemplation. We took it easy or else at a slower pace and enjoyed a brief respite from the cares that beset us during the week. After we came home from church and had dinner we permitted ourselves the luxury of play and relaxation. I remember one such Sunday in August....."


  The Baldwin sisters bring Oscar Cockrell over to the Waltons for a visit. He is running for the State Legislature. He was a boyhood friend of John's and a suitor of Olivia's. Oscar is quite smitten by Olivia's beauty. He is unsatisfied with his life and is looking for purpose. The family prepares for the county fair, Grandma has finished a quilt that took 3 years to make and Olivia bakes a cake. Esther tells her that the secret ingredient in her Aunt Paulie's cake recipe is not almond but whiskey. Thinking that he won't notice Grandma takes a bit from Grandpa's secret stash for the icing flavor. He of course does notice and goes about trying to figure out who has nipped from his bottle. Oscar makes various attempts to lure Olivia away from her life but Olivia is quite content with the life she has.

  The family arrives at the fair. The Baldwins enter some jelly made from their Papa's recipe. The children try the various rides. Grandpa tells stories about Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough-riders to anyone who will listen. Esther is suspicious of Grace Patterson's quilt entry. She suspects that Grace had previously entered it in 1929 and won. Olivia's cake wins first prize but Grandma's quilt does not. Grandpa tastes the cake icing and discovers where his whiskey went. George Porter gives Oscar a hard time during his campaign speech but Oscar wins the crowd over when he puts his speech down and talks from the heart. Although Oscar's arrival has made some in the family question what it would have been like if Olivia had married Oscar instead, Olivia is very happy and sure of her choice to be with John and raise the family she has. In the end Olivia is the coveted "Prize".

Secondary Story:

  Ben wants to rent his pig Grover for the greased pig competition. He figures that with the $1 fee he could buy a female and raise more pigs to sell. Yancy had given the pig to Ben saying that he had found it but some of the kids are unsure of how Yancy actually came to acquire the pig. At the greased pig contest George Porter sees his mark on Grover's ear. After accusing the Walton's of theft he sells the pig to the Walton's for $5.


  "Many people were to touch our lives, hard times, sickness and survival in a harsh decade were still ahead of us, but we weathered them and we endured them, because the love of my parents for each other and for my brothers and sisters made our family invulnerable. I did not know it then, but they were the best days of our lives."

Episode Notes amd Interesting Facts:

  • Guest Star Peter Donat who plays the character Oscar Cockrell was married to Michael Learned (Olivia Walton) from 1956 until 1972. They have three children — Caleb, Christopher and Lucas.

Additional Cast:


Guest Stars: Peter Donat (Oscar Cockrell) with: Mary Jackson (Emily Baldwin), Helen Kleeb (Mamie Baldwin), John Crawford (Sheriff Bridges), Victor Izay (Dr. Vance), David Doremus (G.W. Haines), Cindy Eilbacher (Martha Rose), Dana Elcar (George Porter), Louise Lorima (Grace Patterson), Kathleen O'Malley (Quilt Lady), Joella Deffenbaugh (Cake Lady), Patricia Wilson (Jelly Lady), Queenie Smith (1st woman judge), Angela Greene (2nd woman judge), Charles Kuenstle (1st man), Jay Ripley (2nd man), Bert Prelutsky (3rd man)

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