Ep.5 - The Seashore

  Original Airdate: October 20, 1977
Writer: W. Marion Hargrove
Director: Lawrence Dobkin


  The Walton family goes to Virginia Beach and Ben stays home to experience some independance.


  "In the late spring of 1940 our world on Walton's Mountain was very quiet and uneasy. For the first time ever, people stopped work in the daytime to turn on the radio. The war in Europe had seemed to be hibernating until suddenly on the 10th of May the Germans invaded Belgium and the Netherlands and Luxembourg. By the 10th of June they had enslaved all three and driven the British and French forces into the sea, and were marching into Paris. To all purposes the free world in Europe now consisted only of the British Isles. And just as suddenly, at least it seemed so here at home there were no more pacifists, no isolationists. The little ocean between us and the Nazi terror was not very wide any more. People were beginning to feel that the time had come to help whatever allies we had and to be ready when the attack turned on ourselves."



The Baldwin sisters are concerned about their unused cottage down in Norfolk. Due to the increased preparations for war the Navy has 22,000 men working in Norfolk and the Baldwins want John to fix it up so that they can rent it out to a family that is in need of lodging. John is concerned about being away from the family for more than a week but Olivia asks if there is enough room for all of the Waltons and decides that the whole family will go for a working vacation. The family discusses the plans at the kitchen table. Curt and Mary Ellen plan to stay home with the pending birth of their baby. Ben offers to stay home to look after the farm and the animals but Grandpa suspects that Ben may have other plans up his sleeve.

The family arrives at the cottage by the shore. The kids run to the beach while John and Olivia open up the cottage. They notice that the place is in very good condition for not having been used for one and a half years. There are plants on the veranda that are being watered.

Back at the Walton house Ben douses himself in aftershave and slicks back his hair in preparation for a night on the town. He goes down to use Ike’s phone. Both Ike and Corabeth can smell Ben a mile away with all the lotion he is wearing. Corabeth insists that he have dinner with them which destroys his plans to go out.

At the beach Elizabeth has been watching a young woman who has been acting suspiciously watching and taking photos of the Coast Guard boat that has been patrolling the shoreline.

Back at the cottage Olivia is concerned about the signs that someone has been sleeping in the bed and keeping food in the cottage. Jason sees the young woman that Elizabeth noticed trying to sneak in to a side door of the cottage. He catches her and the family sits her down to hear her story. Her name is Lisa Cooper an English student at the College of William and Mary. She felt compelled to come to the seashore for a spell. When she couldn’t find a place to stay she noticed the empty cottage and found the key under the door mat. She is prepared to leave but Olivia insists that she stay for now. She believes that there is much more to her story and can’t turn her out with no place to go.

The next morning Jason gets to know Lisa better and learns that she is studying music – theory and harmony. She tells Olivia and Jason that she had stayed in the cottage 2 years prior when she first came to study. Her parents came to settle her in and friends of their’s were renting the cottage for the summer so they had a big holiday at the seashore. Olivia asks if her father is a musician and she says no that he is a very fine doctor. She’s is bothered by the topic and makes an excuse to leave.

Later at the beach she spends time with Elizabeth who has been busy making a sand castle. Lisa talks non stop about memories of spending time with her father. Elizabeth notices that she seems a little obsessive on the topic.

Back at the cottage she finds the men listens to news of the war on the radio. They say that Paris may soon fall. Grandpa admires her English roots and praises Winston Churchill and the brave battles England has fought. Lisa is distant in her thoughts and excuses herself. John asks Jason to watch after her. Jason finds Lisa playing a piano in a tavern. He thinks that she is homesick to see her family but she is dismissive of that thought. Jason recognizes the piece she played as being Schubert and mistakingly calls him German. She corrects him by sternly stating that his is Austrian. They run into Jim-Bob who has found a row boat. Jason and Lisa take it out into the water.

Back at home Darlene comes looking for Ben who failed to meet her for their date. She gives him an ear full but he is just as upset because he has to do the chores of 12 people and couldn’t even call her to explain. Then the Baldwin ladies show up with a sweet potato pie for Ben and ask if he could drive them to Charlottesville. He tries to back out stating that he has Darlene visiting but they invite her to come along for ice cream.

Jim-Bob is concerned that he hasn’t seen Jason and Lisa for a few hours and has found a broken oar washed up on the beach.

Jason and Lisa have been taken aboard the Coast Guard vessel and are questioned for suspicious behavior. The officers believe that underneath her British accent is a slight German accent. They try to trip her up but are unable to find the information they are looking for.

Darlene passes Corabeth on her way to see Ben. Corabeth gives her a suspecting look. Ben tells Darlene that Corabeth has been by everyday to make sure he isn’t having too good a time. He thinks that they have all afternoon. He thinks that everyone who could have come to visit or disturb them has already but just at that moment Curt and Mary Ellen arrive. They are walking for exercise and she is in need a blue thread. Curt sees Darlene’s car and says that they should not bother Ben but Mary Ellen is determined to do her errand. She walks in the back door and sees Ban and Darlene on the couch drinking lemonade. Darlene makes her excuses and leaves. Mary Ellen asks what he has been up to and says “Nothing … just ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!”

The officers drive Lisa and Jason back to the cottage and release them into Grandpa’s care. Another official arrives to advise Lisa that her mother has been trying to get in contact with her. He believes that once word is sent to Lisa’s mother that she has been found that she will be on a boat returning to England. Lisa says that she has no intention of going home early, her passport is still valid and she will turn 21 the very next day. He knows that he can’t force her but he advises her to write her Mother a letter.

Ben is so mad that he has driven Jim-Bob’s car all the way to the beach to see his family. He complains that he has 18,000 things to do but much worse is all the people stormin’ in like they have nothing else to do. Corabth, Mrs. Brimmer, the Baldwin sisters and Mary Ellen.

John and Olivia enjoy a walk on the beach alone. Jason and Lisa go back to the club so she can play the piano. When they return to the cottage the family has made her a surprise birthday cake. They ask her to make her a speech. She says it’s time to finally grow up and she tells them her real story. She came to England from Austria in 1933. Her father was allowed practice his medicine and she recites the pledge of allegiance to England. She finally admits that her father drowned in a little boat off of Flounders. He died in active service of the crown. That is what she has been running from but she is now determined to go back to her island to defend it no matter what the cost may be. Jason takes her to the bus stop the return to Williamsburg and eventually England. She kisses him goodbye and give him a treasured music box.



"Lisa returned to her mother in England, and when the furies of war were spent she came back to America and finished her studies at William & Mary. In the letters my brother received from her in later years she spoke often of that turning point in her life, their meeting on the seashore"

Episode Notes & Interesting Facts:

  • Lisa is specializing in theory and harmony for her studies at the College of William and Mary. She had stayed at the cottage two years earlier when her mother and father brought her over to the United States for college.

Additional Cast:



Guest Star: Vickery Turner (Lisa Cooper) with: Helen Kleeb (Miss Mamie), Mary Jackson (Miss Emily), Joe Conley (Ike Godsey), Ronnie Claire Edwards (Corabeth Godsey), Melody Thomas (Darlene), Robert Gooden (Officer Flaherty), Arthur Franz (Chief Moresdale), Michael Richardson (Officer Dittenberger), Tom Bower (Curtis Willard), John Hiestand (Radio Announcer)

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