May 21, 2012


Any Gunsmoke fans out there?

Matt Dillon, played by James Arness, the marshal in the longstanding TV series Gunsmoke.  Marshal Matt Dillon’s larger-than-life persona kept me on the edge of the couch rooting for him. And apparently, I was one viewer among a throng who favored the Dodge City drama because Gunsmoke ran for twenty years with a whopping 635 episodes.

The appeal of an Old West lawman is no surprise. A modern day lawman had already captured my heart—my daddy, William “Bill” Gansberg, who was a city policeman and later a California Highway Patrolman. The uniform and the means of transportation were different, but the ideals that made him strap on a gun and stand for justice were the same—good, out to overcome evil. 

You may recognize facets of Gunsmoke characters in The Bride Wore Blue, the latest book in The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series. 

·         Sheriff’s Deputy Carter Alwyn has Marshal Matt Dillon’s chiseled good looks, integrity, compassion, and confident gait.

·         Vivian Sinclair doesn’t own a saloon, but it won’t take much stretch of your imagination to see a bit of Miss Kitty in her.

·         The wiry miner Boney Hughes definitely reflects some of Festus Haggen‘s backwoods charm. Doc Suzie displays the quiet conscience of Doc Adams. 

Do you have a favorite character from TV westerns? Why is he or she a favorite?

MONA HODGSON is the author of Two Brides Too Many, Too Rich for a Bride, The Bride Wore Blue, and Twice a Bride (October 2012), all four books in The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series (WaterBrook Multnomah). You can learn more about Mona and her books at and connect with her on Facebook at!/Author.Mona.


BK said...

Loved Gunsmoke. Matt, Kitty, Doc, Festus, Newly. What an awesome ensemble.

My other favorite character was Adam Cartwright (Pernell Roberts) of Bonanza. Most often it is Pernell I am envisioning when I'm writing my male leads.

I often complain about being not so young any more but I am so privileged to have grown up during the era of westerns! 8-)

Mona Hodgson said...

Hi BK,
Thanks for reading the post. Bonanza is another of my favorites. Yes, we were privvy to a lot of great westerns.
Happy reading!