The Waltons is an American historical drama television series about a family in rural Virginia during the Great Depression and World War II. It was created by Earl Hamner Jr., based on his 1961 book Spencer's Mountain and the 1963 film of the same name. The series aired from 1972 to 1981.

Series overview

SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedRankRating
First airedLast aired
PilotDecember 19, 1971 (1971-12-19)
125September 14, 1972 (1972-09-14)April 19, 1973 (1973-04-19)1920.6[a]
225September 13, 1973 (1973-09-13)March 14, 1974 (1974-03-14)228.1
325September 12, 1974 (1974-09-12)March 6, 1975 (1975-03-06)825.5
425September 11, 1975 (1975-09-11)March 4, 1976 (1976-03-04)1422.9[b]
525September 23, 1976 (1976-09-23)March 17, 1977 (1977-03-17)1522.3[c]
626September 15, 1977 (1977-09-15)March 30, 1978 (1978-03-30)2020.8[d]
724September 21, 1978 (1978-09-21)March 22, 1979 (1979-03-22)37[1]19.0[1]
824September 20, 1979 (1979-09-20)March 13, 1980 (1980-03-13)
922November 27, 1980 (1980-11-27)June 4, 1981 (1981-06-04)3018.6
TV Movies6February 22, 1982 (1982-02-22)April 27, 1997 (1997-04-27)


Pilot (1971)

TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
The Homecoming: A Christmas Story.Fielder CookEarl Hamner Jr.December 19, 1971 (1971-12-19)

On Christmas Eve 1933, the Waltons are preparing for the holiday. However, John Walton (Andrew Duggan), who has taken work in Waynesboro, Virginia, about 50 miles (80 km) away, is late returning home, and his family is becoming increasingly worried.

Note: Several of the lead actors (excluding all of the children and Grandma Walton) are different from those in the series. The cast includes: Patricia Neal as Olivia Walton, Edgar Bergen as Grandpa Zeb Walton, William Windom as Charlie Snead, and Cleavon Little as Hawthorne Dooley. David Huddleston who played Sheriff Ep Bridges in the movie, would return in the first season "The Literary Man" as writer A.J.Covington. Ike Godsey was played by Woodrow Parfrey, replaced by Joe Conley in the series. Mamie Baldwin was played by Josephine Hutchinson, replaced by Helen Kleeb in the series. Emily Baldwin was played by Dorothy Stickney, to be replaced by Mary Jackson in the series.

Season 1 (1972–1973)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
11"The Foundling"Vincent ShermanJohn McGreeveySeptember 14, 1972 (1972-09-14)
The Waltons shelter a deaf girl (Erica Hunton) left on their back porch by her mother because her father insists on institutionalizing her. While they search for her family, they start teaching her sign language, which she uses to help Elizabeth when an emergency arises.
22"The Carnival"Alf KjellinNigel McKeandSeptember 21, 1972 (1972-09-21)
A traveling carnival comes to Walton's Mountain, but the children choose to sacrifice the money they had saved for it so that Grandma can replace her broken glasses. When the troupe becomes stranded by their dishonest ringmaster, John and Olivia allow them to stay temporarily in their barn, and the family is rewarded with a private show.
33"The Calf"Harry HarrisJim ByrnesSeptember 28, 1972 (1972-09-28)
The Waltons' cow gives birth to a bull calf, which John decides must be sold for truck repair money, much to his children's disappointment. He can buy it back after he learns the man he sold it to (Leonard Stone) plans to butcher it.
44"The Hunt"Robert ButlerJohn McGreeveyOctober 5, 1972 (1972-10-05)
John-Boy is anxious to prove himself on a turkey hunt with his father and two friends but finds he can't shoot a turkey, which he equates with premeditated murder. However, he has no trouble killing a bear when it attacks his father.
55"The Typewriter"Philip LeacockTheodore ApsteinOctober 12, 1972 (1972-10-12)
John-Boy borrows an antique typewriter from the Baldwin sisters so he can submit a proper manuscript to a magazine. Mary Ellen inadvertently sells the typewriter to a traveling junk dealer (George Tobias). Fortunately, Sheriff Bridges is able to help her track it down.
66"The Star"Alf KjellinJohn McGreeveyOctober 19, 1972 (1972-10-19)
A meteorite crashes through the roof of the Baldwin sisters' "Recipe" room, which they take as some kind of sign from their dead Papa. Grandpa Walton takes it as a sign of his impending death; Ben takes it as a sign he will win the fourth-grade spelling bee. A Cousin Polonius Baldwin (Iggie Wolfington) at first plans to exploit the meteorite for financial gain, then tries to steal their "Recipe machine".
77"The Sinner"Philip LeacockJohn Furia, Jr.October 26, 1972 (1972-10-26)
A young preacher, Matthew Fordwick (John Ritter), comes to Walton's Mountain fresh from seminary, where he has learned the currently-popular fire and brimstone style of preaching. He happens to be a Baldwin relative, and after a visit, succumbs to the effects of their "Recipe". His tee-totaler church superior fires him, but after he humbly apologizes to John-Boy for his hypocrisy, Grandpa and John convince the congregation to look at the forgiving side of the gospel and accept him.
88"The Boy From the C.C.C."Harry HarrisWilliam WelchNovember 2, 1972 (1972-11-02)
A troubled teenager from Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan, whose father was murdered by a gangster, runs away from the Civilian Conservation Corps to Walton's Mountain. The Waltons take him in and teach him that he can trust some people, and he doesn't have to fight (literally) for everything he gets.
99"The Ceremony"Vincent ShermanNigel McKeandNovember 9, 1972 (1972-11-09)
A Jewish Nazi-refugee family moves to Walton's Mountain from Germany. Expecting to find similar antisemitism in America, the bitter, distrustful father, Professor Mann, chooses to protect his family by hiding their faith, and cancels plans for his son's impending bar mitzvah. The paranoid couple rebuff the Waltons' every attempt at a visitation. John-Boy discovers the family secret and helps the boy find a rabbi to conduct his bar mitzvah while the others open their home for the ceremony. Grandpa convinces the father not to deny his faith and to honor his son by attending.
1010"The Legend"Lee PhilipsJohn McGreeveyNovember 16, 1972 (1972-11-16)
John's World War I buddy (Jim Antonio) visits. After he accidentally sets off a grass fire, for which Jason is blamed, and wounds the family dog on a hunting trip, John discovers his friend has not been able to put away the horrors of the war and continue with his life.
1111"The Literary Man"Philip LeacockColley CibberNovember 30, 1972 (1972-11-30)
A.J. Covington (David Huddleston), a wandering, well-read man claiming to be a writer, comes to Walton's Mountain and befriends John-Boy, helping him with his writing. But A.J. must come to terms with the fact that, after an initial success, he has spent most of his life in search of "the big story" and has avoided actual writing for fear of failure. John-Boy begins to back away from writing when he thinks it is interfering with his family's needs and that it causes him to forget his family duties. Still, A.J. encourages him to find value in writing about the little things and begins to think about settling down on the mountain. Meanwhile, Jim-Bob is stricken with appendicitis, and, though his surgery is successful, his family is left with a steep bill. A.J. decides to lend them the money and moves on once more, leaving them a farewell letter signed "Andy,” the name only his closest friends may know him by.
1212"The Dust Bowl Cousins"Robert ButlerPaul SavageDecember 7, 1972 (1972-12-07)
John's cousin (Jay W. MacIntosh) and her husband (Warren Vanders) and children seek refuge in Walton's Mountain after losing their Kansas farm to the Dust Bowl, but her husband has developed a bad attitude toward misfortune. He has taught their son that the world owes them something. They shoplift repeatedly from Godsey's store, and stay longer than expected. The son makes advances to Mary Ellen and fights with John-Boy before their departure.
1313"The Reunion"Jack SheaEarl HamnerDecember 14, 1972 (1972-12-14)
The Baldwin sisters plan to hold a family reunion when their cousin Homer (Denver Pyle) visits, but Homer runs off with their batch of over 100 jars of the "Recipe" intended for the reunion, planning to sell it in Charlottesville. Then, all of their invitations are returned because the intended recipients are either dead or moved away. The Waltons make up for the failed reunion with a family visit to cheer the disappointed sisters.
1414"The Minstrel"Philip LeacockJohn Furia Jr.December 21, 1972 (1972-12-21)
A young wandering musician named Jamie visits the mountain, while John Walton gets a contract for the family to pick apples on the deadline. Mary Ellen thinks Jamie will help her fulfill her dreams of travel and adventure. While picking apples, John-Boy Walton falls and breaks his wrist. Mary Ellen runs away with Jamie, then learns a hard lesson when he tells her he won't be "tied down" by anybody and continues without her. She returns home to the family, who use some apple-picking profits to fund her trip with friends.
1515"The Actress"Vincent ShermanWilliam BastJanuary 4, 1973 (1973-01-04)
Alvira Drummond (Pippa Scott), a famous stage and screen actress, is invited to stay at the Walton home after her car breaks down in Walton's Mountain. Contrary to the front she puts up; she is out of work and money after her agent, tired of dealing with her "prima donna" attitude. After she learns a humbling lesson, the Waltons help her regain her confidence, then organize a town performance to help her raise money for a train ticket back to New York.
1616"The Fire"Harry HarrisEarl HamnerJanuary 11, 1973 (1973-01-11)
After learning that schoolteacher Miss Hunter is teaching evolution to his daughter, religious fanatic Louis Bascomb (Richard Bradford) breaks into the Baldwins' and steals some Recipe. He gets drunk on it and beats his daughter Lois May (Laurie Prange), and uses the remaining Recipe to burn down the school, killing himself in the process. Ike Godsey lets Miss Hunter use some extra space in his store for temporary classrooms until the county can build a new school. Olivia contacts the girl's mother, who had earlier run away from her abusive husband, and the woman returns to look after her daughter.
1717"The Love Story"Lee PhilipsEarl HamnerJanuary 18, 1973 (1973-01-18)
Jenny Pendleton (Sian Barbara Allen), whose mother died years ago, runs away from her father and new stepmother, back to her deserted house in Walton's Mountain. Jenny and John-Boy meet and fall deeply in love, but she is soon traumatized by her father's sudden accidental death and ultimately moves away with the stepmother.
1818"The Courtship"Harry HarrisJeb RosebrookJanuary 25, 1973 (1973-01-25)
Olivia's uncle, Cody Nelson (Eduard Franz), visits. He is a bank accountant near retirement but put out of work by the bank closings. They attempt to cheer him up by introducing him to a lively, spirited local widow, whom he courts. Afraid to commit to her upon learning of her four marriages (including two divorces), he finally resolves to ask her to marry him. The Reverend Fordwick performs the ceremony at the Waltons', and the couple remains happily married for life.
1919"The Gypsies"Harry HarrisPaul SavageFebruary 1, 1973 (1973-02-01)
A gypsy family, stranded with a broken wagon during a thunderstorm, break into the temporarily unoccupied Baldwin house for shelter. Despite hostility from others in the community, the Waltons allow them to camp on their property while Grandma tends--successfully--their sick baby.
2020"The Deed"Vincent ShermanJames MenziesFebruary 8, 1973 (1973-02-08)
When a lumber company tries to claim the Mountain, the family discovers that their ancestors never filed for legal title to their land. They must raise $200 to obtain the deed, and the entire family tries to chip in. Against his father's wishes, John-Boy decides to take time off from school to work in Wheeling. On payday, he is robbed of his pay by two men while leaving a tavern. He encounters the same pair a few days later and asks a nearby policeman to arrest them.
2121"The Scholar"Lee PhilipsJohn McGreeveyFebruary 22, 1973 (1973-02-22)
Verdie Grant (Lynn Hamilton) asks John-Boy to teach her how to read and write, on the condition that he keep it a strict secret. She is motivated to travel to Richmond to see her youngest daughter Sarah graduate from college. A misunderstanding causes Verdie to assume John-Boy betrayed her confidence, and she angrily stops the lessons, despite his attempt to explain. After asking him to read Sarah's letter to her, she relents, which implores her to come to the graduation. She completes the lessons and makes the trip to Richmond, becoming a good Walton family friend.
2222"The Bicycle"Alf KjellinNigel McKeandMarch 1, 1973 (1973-03-01)
Frustrated with the burden of her domestic obligations, Olivia buys a used bicycle, which awakens some of her dormant dreams as she starts singing in the church choir again. Meanwhile, John-Boy helps blacksmith Curtis Norton (Ned Beatty) woo a "mail-order bride" by ghost-writing letters for him. When the city-raised girl arrives with big dreams, she becomes disillusioned with Curtis' bucolic ways, becomes angry when she discovers John-Boy wrote the letters, and cancels the engagement. Olivia's experience reminds her that dreams don't always work out and don't replace family benefits. She convinces the girl to accept Curtis and loans her the bicycle to go after him.
2323"The Townie"Jack SheaRichard FielderMarch 8, 1973 (1973-03-08)
John-Boy's friend Sarah Jane Simmonds (Sissy Spacek) wants to marry him to escape her strict, overprotective mother, but he rejects the idea. She then secretly dates a "townie," a spoiled rich boy named Theodore "Ted" Albert Claypool Jr. (Nicholas Hammond), who drives a LaSalle coupe, and exasperates John-Boy by expressing admiration for the notorious John Dillinger. He steals money and a gun from his father and takes Sarah Jane off to Maryland to elope. John-Boy pursues them and finds them both injured outside the overturned LaSalle. Ted pulls the gun on John-Boy and tries to take the Walton truck, but John and Ted's father show up.
2424"An Easter Story"Philip LeacockStory by : Earl Hamner
Teleplay by : John McGreevey
April 19, 1973 (1973-04-19)

Olivia is stricken with polio after returning from church in February. When pain and fatigue turn into numbness and paralysis, she faces the prospect of permanent disability with courage. Meanwhile, Jason enters an amateur talent show, playing and singing a song Grandma inspires him to compose with her housework: “The Ironing Board Blues”; he wins the contest and a new guitar. The family watches him perform, and back at home, they reenact the contest for Olivia and Erin. When John-Boy checks in to apply at the University of Virginia, he seeks out a doctor who specializes in the treatment of polio, and he tells John-Boy of an unorthodox, experimental treatment. Olivia tries the exercises against the realistic and pessimistic advice of the local doctor. At first, she has hope of recovery by Easter, but then she becomes discouraged and resigns herself to life in a wheelchair. However, shortly before Easter, she dreams that Elizabeth calls out for help, and she gets up out of bed without effort. She attends the Easter sunrise service on the mountain with her family, celebrating the apparent miracle.

In 2009, TV Guide ranked this episode #77 on its list of the 100 Greatest Episodes.[2]

Season 2 (1973–1974)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
261"The Journey"Harry HarrisNigel McKeandSeptember 13, 1973 (1973-09-13)
Maggie McKenzie (Linda Watkins), an elderly widowed neighbor in failing health, asks John-Boy to take her to Virginia Beach, but he has plans instead to take a girl to a dance. He finally breaks his date and takes Mrs. McKenzie to the shore, where she relives memories of her honeymoon and arrival from Scotland.
272"The Odyssey"Jack SheaJoanna LeeSeptember 20, 1973 (1973-09-20)
Needing some alone time, John-Boy hikes up the mountain to a deserted cabin, and there finds his friend Sarah Jane Simmons (Sissy Spacek) hiding, nine months pregnant. She has run away from a well-to-do family where her mother placed her on the promise they would educate her. But they were only interested in using her as their servant, so she ran away and married a young man who had gone looking for work with the Works Progress Administration. A rainstorm strands John-Boy and Sarah, and he must deliver the baby.
283"The Separation"Philip LeacockStory by : Ellen Corby
Teleplay by : Richard Carr
September 27, 1973 (1973-09-27)
The Waltons' electric power is shut off when they are unable to pay the bill. Sent to buy candles, Grandpa Zeb comes up with a better solution: he offers to do a house repair job for the Baldwin sisters, for cash and the use of their car to pay the bill in Charlottesville. They accept, provided he takes them with him. Worried sick, jealous, and angry when he is gone all day, Esther refuses to listen to his explanation. Zeb leaves the house, sleeping on the pool table in Ike Godsey's store. Zeb and Esther's pride escalates to the point that he talks of leaving her for good until Olivia suggests Grandma attend the upcoming square dance, where the caller is Zeb's old rival for her affection.
294"The Theft"Harry HarrisRobert Malcolm YoungOctober 4, 1973 (1973-10-04)
A wealthy widow accuses John Sr. of stealing some family silver after he has done a repair job for her. He suspiciously has come into some extra money and refuses to say where he got it because he has sold his wedding ring to a pawn shop. It turns out the family's son has taken and sold the silver, hiding from his mother the fact that their wealth is gone.
305"The Roots"Philip LeacockSheldon StarkOctober 11, 1973 (1973-10-11)
Harley Foster, an unemployed auto mechanic turned migrant worker, comes to the mountain with his young son Jody with whom he has been traveling the country. They sleep in the Waltons' barn. Verdie Grant takes a great interest in him and the boy and asks John-Boy to play matchmaker. After Harley repairs the Waltons' car, John-Boy gets Ike Godsey to hire Harley as a mechanic. Jody longs to settle down, and Verdie wants him to go to school. But Harley will have none of it and angrily decides to leave immediately. In desperation, the boy steals some money from Ike's till so that Harley will be arrested and have to stay put. After Jody confesses, Harley changes his mind, apologizes to Verdie, and stays in Walton's Mountain.
316"The Chicken Thief"Ralph SenenskyRichard CarrOctober 18, 1973 (1973-10-18)
John-Boy faces a dilemma when he sees Yancy Tucker (Robert Donner) steal two chickens; if he remains silent, the law considers him complicit. Yancy has been playing Robin Hood, giving the chickens to people worse off. He promises to return the chickens to their owner Charlie Potter (Richard O'Brien) so that John-Boy is off the hook. As he does so, Charlie Potter is shot in the leg. Now Yancy is in jail until John Sr. figures out that the chicken farmer accidentally shot himself.
327"The Prize"Philip LeacockDale EunsonOctober 25, 1973 (1973-10-25)
Olivia's childhood sweetheart Oscar Cockrell (Peter Donat) comes to visit. He is a politician running for the state legislature and unhappily married. The Waltons go to the county fair, and Oscar is one of the judges. Olivia wins a five-dollar first prize for her cake. Yancy Tucker loans Ben Walton a pig for the greased pig contest. Farmer George Porter (Dana Elcar) catches the pig and recognizes it as one of his own from its earmark and demands either the pig back or five dollars. Oscar wants to pay the money for Olivia, but she gives Ben her prize money.
338"The Braggart"Jack SheaRichard FielderNovember 1, 1973 (1973-11-01)
Hobbie Shank, (Michael McGreevey) a teenage orphan, stays with the Waltons for a while. John-Boy begins to dislike him, as his charming talkative banter keeps the Walton girls from their chores. Hobbie's skill at baseball attracts talented scouts and a chance at the big leagues until an accidental fall threatens his future.
349"The Fawn"Ralph WaiteJohn McGreeveyNovember 8, 1973 (1973-11-08)
In the first of several episodes directed by Ralph Waite, Erin finds an orphaned baby deer in the woods and intends to keep it as a pet, which the law doesn't permit. As soon as they return the fawn to the woods, a pair of poachers are caught shooting it, so Erin gets to keep it a bit longer while it recovers. The game warden offers Erin a compromise: instead of releasing it into the wild, he can put it in a wildlife preserve where she can visit it. She finally understands releasing it is best. In a parallel story, John-Boy gets a job as rent collector for a local landlord Graham Foster (Charles Tyner), and learns the man is dishonorable and miserly. His rents are higher than many tenants can pay in full, and he refuses to make needed repairs. He refuses to pay John-Boy's five percent commission since the shortfall in collections exceeds this and fires him. John-Boy recovers his commission by making the repairs with Jason and gives the man his change.
3510"The Thanksgiving Story"Philip LeacockStory by : Earl Hamner
Teleplay by : Joanna Lee
November 15, 1973 (1973-11-15)
In another two-hour special, Jenny Pendleton (Sian Barbara Allen) returns for a visit with her stepmother. John-Boy is hit by a loose fan belt while working the sawmill and knocked down. He conceals his dizziness and blurred vision because he wants to take an entrance exam for Boatwright University, but he cannot finish it. He has a risky operation to remove a blood clot from his brain. After the operation, Miss Hunter persuades the college, against doctors' advice, to allow him to re-take the exam, and he is accepted, winning a scholarship. Meanwhile, Jason helps the lonely Baldwin sisters make a supply of moonshine, after which they want to adopt him, but John and Olivia refuse.
3712"The Substitute"Lee PhilipsJohn McGreeveyNovember 22, 1973 (1973-11-22)
When Miss Hunter is called away because of a family emergency, the school board (on which John sits) hires a substitute teacher (Catherine Burns), who travels from New York City to fill in. The young woman has excellent teaching credentials but lacks interpersonal skills and, staying at the Waltons' house, eats her meals alone in her locked room. She counsels John-Boy not to write so emotionally. Her strict teaching style is so insensitive to individual children's needs that many refuse to go to school. John is appointed to resolve the issue with her, but she resigns. Olivia convinces her not to distance herself from people, and she changes her methods. When she leaves, the children are sorry to see her go.
3813"The Bequest"Alf KjellinMort ThawNovember 29, 1973 (1973-11-29)
Grandma receives a letter informing her that an old friend has died and bequeathed her $250, which she decides to share with the family and church. The family uses John-Boy's current college fund to replace the broken water heater since Grandma has promised to replace the fund. But then another letter comes, with the news that the deceased woman's medical debts exceed her assets, so the legacy cannot be honored. Grandma is ashamed and afraid to face John-Boy until he tells her that he loves her no matter what.
3914"The Air Mail Man"Robert ButlerPeter L. Dixon & Sarah DixonDecember 13, 1973 (1973-12-13)
The evening before Olivia's birthday, an air mail pilot (Michael Glaser) is forced to make an emergency landing in Walton's pasture. He stays the night with them until he can fix his plane. He hides that he has run away from his pregnant wife until she comes looking for him. After discussing his fears of fatherhood with John, he decides not to leave her and gives Olivia a short ride on his plane before returning to his wife.
4015"The Triangle"Lee PhilipsLionel E. SiegelDecember 20, 1973 (1973-12-20)
John-Boy's teacher, Miss Hunter, meets with him to critique an essay he is writing about a special person in his life but does not realize he is writing about her. Meanwhile, Rev. Fordwick starts regularly dating Miss Hunter and takes her to the community picnic, making John-Boy hurt and jealous.
4116"The Awakening"Lee PhilipsJoanna LeeJanuary 3, 1974 (1974-01-03)
Growing pains cause havoc on Walton's Mountain. Grandma's upset as her 68th birthday approaches, qualifying her for an "Old Age" pension, and she frustrates everyone by refusing to seek help for dizziness and a hearing problem. John-Boy craves private, quiet space for an office in an attached cabin, but Mary Ellen is told she can use the same space as her bedroom. A visiting college boy Mary Ellen encounters at the lake plunges her into confusion when he kisses her, despite being several years older.
4217"The Honeymoon"Jack SheaJohn McGreeveyJanuary 10, 1974 (1974-01-10)
No one helps with the chores, Reckless the dog runs across Olivia's just-mopped kitchen floor, and Olivia threatens a sit-down strike. After 19 years of marriage, John takes Olivia to Virginia Beach, Virginia for the honeymoon they never had. Grandpa sells his 1864 2-cent piece to Ike Godsey to finance their trip. Marcia Woolery (Tammi Bula) pressures John-Boy for more of a relationship commitment, causing him to break up with her. While walking outdoors with Marcia, he falls and dislocates his shoulder. John and Olivia get caught in a rainstorm on their way to their hotel, as do the children who come down with head colds. John and Olivia take a romantic walk on the beach and build a sandcastle. After reading about a fire on the mountain, Olivia phones Ike, who tells her the fire is far away but blabs about everything else that has been going on. Olivia insists they hurry home. Marcia informs John-Boy that she's already dating someone else.
4318"The Heritage"Harry HarrisDale EunsonJanuary 17, 1974 (1974-01-17)
A mysterious stranger (Noah Beery) comes and samples the Waltons' hot spring water, then returns to offer John $5,000 to sell the mountain, claiming he wants to retire on it, but John is unwilling. Later, the man admits he represents developers who want to build a tourist resort on the mountain and increases the offer to $25,000. Now John leans toward accepting it, thinking they can keep the house. Even though his ancestors are buried on the mountain, John knows the money will greatly benefit his family, especially John-Boy's education. When the man returns to close the deal, he raises the offer to $30,000, informing them the developers want to remove the house, and offer John a job as a hunting/fishing guide. After much anguish, he finally decides his family's heritage mustn't be sold.
4419"The Gift"Ralph SenenskyStory by : Ray Goldrup & Jack Hanrahan
Teleplay by : Carol Evan McKeand
January 24, 1974 (1974-01-24)
Jason's close friend Seth Turner (Ron Howard), who shares his love for music, carves a recorder from an apple tree branch Jason gives him and offers to teach Jason how to play it. He learns that he has been stricken with leukemia and has only a year to live. Jason, and Seth's mother, take it extremely hard, but after the initial shock, Seth and his father resolved to make the most of the remaining time. Seth carves Jason's name in the recorder and gives it to him to remember him by.
4520"The Cradle"Ralph SenenskyJoanna LeeJanuary 31, 1974 (1974-01-31)
Olivia is pregnant for the eighth time and fears bringing another child into the world during the Depression. Elizabeth, at first, is unhappy to learn she won't be the baby anymore, especially after being taunted about it by Jim-Bob; but then looks forward to a baby sister. But it is not to be when Olivia miscarries.
4621"The Fulfillment"Nick WebsterMichael Russnow & Tony KaydenFebruary 7, 1974 (1974-02-07)
The Waltons bring home Stevie (Tiger Williams), a troubled young orphan, to stay with them temporarily. Meanwhile, Ann, the wife of town blacksmith Curtis Norton (Victor French),[3] is told she will not be able to bear children. She stays in denial of this, as Curtis and Stevie take a liking to each other. Olivia doesn't want to force the idea of adoption on Ann, but John-Boy tells Ann that love isn't like money, in that one can't save it up for the future. She changes her mind, and the Nortons adopt Stevie.
4722"The Ghost Story"Ralph WaiteNigel McKeandFebruary 14, 1974 (1974-02-14)
The Waltons bring Luke, a boy whose mother he loved very much has died, into their home while his father tries to find work out of town. Ike gives John-Boy a "spirit board", which his writer's curiosity leads him to investigate. As he and the children play with it in several sessions, the "spirit" apparently delivers the fragmentary message "Luke .. must not ..." A series of circumstances then seem to conspire to prevent the family from getting Luke on a train to go to his father. Then they hear on the radio that a serious accident has derailed the train.
4823"The Graduation"Alf KjellinLionel E. SiegelFebruary 21, 1974 (1974-02-21)
John-Boy's high school graduation finally approaches, and the family buys him a new suit for the occasion. After the family's beloved cow Chance dies, John-Boy sells the suit back to give him the cash to replace the cow despite his father's strenuous objection. Grandma and Olivia replace the suit by altering the tweed suit Grandpa was saving for his burial.
4924"The Five Foot Shelf"Ralph WaiteJohn HawkinsMarch 7, 1974 (1974-03-07)
When a traveling salesman George Reed (Ben Piazza) comes selling the 50-volume set of Harvard Classics, Olivia makes a $3.00 down payment, since they will replace some of John-Boy's required college books and help satisfy her occasional desire for adventure. She also allows the salesman to stay in the barn. But instead of ordering the books, he uses the money to buy his daughter a doll from Ike's store. When John and John-Boy figure out his deception, John demands the money back but decides just to banish him and write it off as a lesson learned when he sees how desperation has overridden the man's ethics and sense of pride. The man's conscience finally wins out: he persuades Ike to buy the doll back and returns the money to the Waltons. After this, Olivia still decides to buy the books.
5025"The Car"Philip LeacockChris AndrewsMarch 14, 1974 (1974-03-14)
John-Boy looks to buy a car which he will need to get to college. On a tip, he offers to repair the storm damage to the home of a reclusive couple (Ed Lauter and Bonnie Bartlett) in exchange for the beautiful car they keep in their garage. The man grudgingly accepts but proves unwilling to part with the car because it belonged to his son, who is dead. After his wife threatens to leave him, and John-Boy gets him to talk about his son, he relents.

Season 3 (1974–1975)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
511"The Conflict"Ralph SenenskyJeb RosebrookSeptember 12, 1974 (1974-09-12)
In a two-hour episode, the family visits some of their hill-folk kin, the family of Grandpa's sister-in-law: Martha Corinne (Beulah Bondi), her son Boone (Morgan Woodward), and his married grandson Wade (Richard Hatch). They are being forced off their property by a Civilian Conservation Corps project to build a national park and federal highway. Grandpa supports them in their determination to take up arms against the government if necessary to defend Walton's land, which puts him at odds with John-Boy. John tries with the help of Virginia senator Lucas Avery (Paul Fix) to appeal the state's decision to displace the family but is unsuccessful. Martha Corinne finally relents when a marshal shoots John-Boy in the side.
533"The First Day"Philip LeacockJohn McGreeveySeptember 19, 1974 (1974-09-19)
The whole family is excited about John-Boy's first day at Boatwright College, but hazing from older boys and bureaucratic red tape makes it less than idyllic. Back on the mountain, Jason finds it hard to step into John-Boy's shoes at school and home.
544"The Thoroughbred"Harry HarrisMichael Russnow & Tony KaydenSeptember 26, 1974 (1974-09-26)
John-Boy enters his mule, Blue, in a local race in which Grandpa was the last Walton to win. He finds himself in competition with one of his wealthy classmates, who not only enters a thoroughbred horse but competes with him for the attentions of a female student, Selina, (Kathleen Quinlan), the granddaughter of the race's sponsor. John-Boy narrowly wins the race and learns a lesson in good sportsmanship.
555"The Runaway"Harry HarrisStory by : Carol Evan McKeand and Larry Bischof
Teleplay by : Larry Bischof
October 3, 1974 (1974-10-03)
When the class guinea pig dies in his care, Jim-Bob can't get anyone to listen to his distress, so he runs away from home. John-Boy misses a lecture by a famous travel writer to help look for him, but a chance encounter puts a positive spin on the day for the brothers.
566"The Romance"Ivan DixonHindi BrooksOctober 10, 1974 (1974-10-10)
John-Boy teaches Olivia to drive so she can fulfill a dream by taking an evening art class at college. She finds herself in a dilemma when the young male teacher becomes romantically attracted to her and makes advances during the class's field trip to a museum. He later comes to their home to apologize to her and John Sr.
577"The Ring"Philip LeacockNigel McKeandOctober 17, 1974 (1974-10-17)
Mary Ellen is invited to a Boatwright dance by one of John-Boy's classmates. She buys a handbag from the local junk dealer and finds an amethyst ring concealed inside it. Even though she knows who the handbag's owner is, she rationalizes to borrow the ring for the dance and return it later. She loses the ring in the ladies' room at the dance. John-Boy's girlfriend helps her retrieve it at the cost of breaking university rules, which denies her eligibility in a prestigious sorority. Mary Ellen clears her conscience by returning the ring to its owner.
588"The System"Harry HarrisJeb RosebrookOctober 24, 1974 (1974-10-24)
John-Boy tutors Tom Povich (Richard Masur), a football player who wants to become a lawyer, for an important exam as he is at risk of failing history and losing his athletic scholarship. During the exam, John-Boy finds Tom in a moment of insecurity, glancing at his neighbor's test paper. The school's honor code and his good conscience demand that John-Boy, reluctantly, turn him in, but he successfully defends his friend against expulsion. In the subplot, Jason catches Ben smoking cigarettes and tells Grandpa, who sets out to teach Ben a lesson about the bad habit.
599"The Spoilers"Jack SheaCaryl LednerOctober 31, 1974 (1974-10-31)
After losing money in the financial crash, the well-to-do and snobby Hanover family from New York City move onto Walton's Mountain to take over their abandoned ancestral home. John and Olivia try to teach the idealistic Mr. Hanover (Mark Miller) and his wife (Barbara Cason) farm living skills, but the spoiled and fresh children (Linda Purl and David Gruner) quickly make enemies within the Waltons and their school friends. Before the family finally leaves, the Hanover daughter gives Mary Ellen a stylish, turbaned dress from Paris.
6010"The Marathon"Ralph SenenskyNigel McKeandNovember 7, 1974 (1974-11-07)
On a whim, John-Boy decides to enter a seven-day dance marathon after meeting Daisy (Deirdre Lenihan), a young woman who also enters. Olivia is angry about him entering such a grueling event but eventually comes to terms with the fact that he is becoming an adult, responsible for taking care of himself. John-Boy discovers how brutally the marathon organizers treat the dancers and how desperate Daisy is to win the prize money to leave Virginia for big-city life. Halfway through, he finally decides to quit. Bernard Barrow appears as marathon emcee Harry Bracket.
6111"The Book"Harry HarrisJoseph BonaduceNovember 14, 1974 (1974-11-14)
John-Boy stretches himself academically by taking an advanced writing class but soon gets the feeling he's gotten himself in too deep. Meanwhile, his mother sees an advertisement for a publishing company looking for new authors and gives them a sample of his work. They send a letter offering to publish him, with a contract he signs over his father's warning. Since he is now a "published author," he gets a slightly swelled head in his writing class, and his professor sets up a radio interview in his class. John-Boy learns a hard lesson when receiving a bill with his delivered books; the company is a vanity press. He is ashamed but decides to share the lesson he's learned with the interviewer (Gerald McRaney). In a subplot, Jason's musical talents are discovered by the agent of Bobby Bigelow, a modestly famous Virginia native country singer, who hires him to play in his band.
6212"The Job"Ivan DixonNigel McKeandNovember 21, 1974 (1974-11-21)
John-Boy takes a part-time job reading to a young blind woman named Ruth, a former Boatwright student. He has reservations about keeping it when he learns how bitter, closed, and afraid of the world Ruth has become from her disability and the recent death of her father. When he can't take it anymore, he leaves in anger, causing Ruth to reconsider her attitude. She decides to accept his invitation to come to Walton's Mountain, and Olivia prepares a family picnic at Drucilla's Pond. On the way home, Elizabeth foolishly walks on the bridge rail and falls onto the riverbank, knocking herself unconscious, and Ruth, all by herself, tries to rescue her. Ruth takes some training at an institute for the blind, returns to Boatwright, and becomes a state social worker.
6313"The Departure"Ivan DixonJoanna LeeDecember 5, 1974 (1974-12-05)
It's John Sr's turn to become restless, deciding to take a job in a machine shop in Norfolk, 90 miles from Walton's Mountain (in reality, it's twice that), planning to return on weekends. This frustrates Olivia, and his absence is felt by the entire family, including John-Boy, who is encountering some academic problems at Boatwright. John finds he has to work overtime the first weekend and contend with a jealous, bitter fellow worker and boarder named Stavros. When John-Boy drives to visit his father, John takes him to the local bar, where they end up in a fight with a stranger. John finally comes to his senses and returns home with his son.
6414"The Visitor"Ralph WaiteKathleen HiteDecember 12, 1974 (1974-12-12)
An old neighbor (John Beal) who moved away five years earlier returns to his abandoned house, saying his wife will be coming soon. The Walton woman and a friend clean up the house in anticipation of her return. But then the man's son arrives with the news that his mother died two years ago, and his father has not accepted this. Also, Elizabeth has an imaginary friend.
6515"The Birthday"Ivan DixonNancy GreenwaldDecember 19, 1974 (1974-12-19)
As his 73rd birthday nears, Grandpa has a heart attack. The family struggles to keep up his spirits, finally calling on his love for the mountain to help him recover. Against the hospital physician's advice, they insist on taking Grandpa home to recuperate in a bed under a canopy in the backyard, surrounded by plants and flowers, which proves therapeutic.
6616"The Lie"Jack SheaHindi BrooksJanuary 2, 1975 (1975-01-02)
Ben borrows John-Boy's car to take his girlfriend, Nancy, to a secret meeting with her mother, who left home several years ago. Nancy swears Ben to secrecy because she is afraid of her embittered father finding out. The good deed gets Ben into serious trouble when a joyrider temporarily steals the car and has a hit-and-run accident, and the victim records the license number. John-Boy pieces together what happened and convinces Ben to come clean. The girl tells her father about the meeting, and John Sr. makes him realize he was afraid of losing his daughter but that he has no need to fear her contact with her mother.
6717"The Matchmakers"Jack SheaJohn McGreeveyJanuary 9, 1975 (1975-01-09)
John's unmarried cousin Corabeth Walton comes for an extended visit after the death of her mother. The family introduces her to Ike Godsey, who likes her and decides he is tired of the bachelor life. He takes her, John, and Olivia to a first-class restaurant and surprises John by proposing to Corabeth, and she accepts, despite her reservations. Ike is enthusiastic about their future together, but Corabeth is prim and reserved. When they both have "cold feet," John and Olivia must separately counsel and encourage them to proceed with the wedding. Reverend Fordwick marries them. Meanwhile, as the family's "middle girl," Erin feels neglected and unnoticed, so John-Boy treats her to a photographic portrait session.
6818"The Beguiled"Ralph SenenskyKathleen HiteJanuary 16, 1975 (1975-01-16)
John-Boy is "beguiled" by Sis Branford (Darleen Carr), a rich, spoiled Boatwright student who almost has a traffic accident with him, ruining one of his tires. She also steals his chemistry notebook, which he desperately needs to pass an exam. She flirts and makes up with him, and he invites her home. She brings him a new tire but frames Jim-Bob's friend Danny Comley (Willie Aames) for the notebook theft. John-Boy realizes she's only been using him as a plaything, and he tells her off.
6919"The Caretakers"Ivan DixonRichard CarrJanuary 23, 1975 (1975-01-23)
Grandpa and Grandma feel cut off and disrespected by the family and decide to move away to be temporary caretakers of another farmhouse. Without Grandpa's labor, John is forced to hire a millhand, who proves clumsy and incompetent. After the grandparents encounter problems with the malfunctioning cookstove, radio, clock, and sink (not to mention lacking transportation), Grandpa finally swallows his pride. He agrees that they can move back to the relief of all the Waltons.
7020"The Shivaree"Lee PhilipsMax HodgeJanuary 30, 1975 (1975-01-30)
The family hosts the wedding of Olivia's namesake, the orphaned daughter of a friend, to Bob Hill (Bruce Davison), a city boy from Richmond. Ike and Yancy plan a shivaree, a Blue Ridge tradition based on an old French-Canadian hazing ritual where the groom is kidnapped and left in the woods on the wedding night. After John-Boy explains this to Bob, who has little sense of humor and wants nothing to do with it, he and his father leave a message for Ike and Yancy, who are off on a hunting trip, warning them to cancel the hazing, but they don't receive it in time and carry it out. Bob is so upset he tells his bride he thinks the wedding was a mistake, but the family fixes up the old cabin on top of the mountain as a honeymoon cottage, and he relents. Ike and Yancy cause some tension by showing up again, but they intend to serenade the young couple.
7121"The Choice"Alf KjellinNancy GreenwaldFebruary 6, 1975 (1975-02-06)
Believing the Depression will soon end, John and Zebulon have plans to expand the lumber business into "Walton and Sons," depending on Jason to be a major partner. But Miss Hunter (Mariclare Costello) has been encouraging Jason to develop his musical talents with professional lessons and John-Boy to expand his writing skills by writing a novel. John-Boy is not sure he is ready to write a novel, but Jason gets a piano teacher, who advises him to apply for a scholarship at a music conservatory. Jason wants to be a composer like George Gershwin. John is firmly opposed, believing Jason won't be able to earn a living with music. When he finally changes his mind and decides he wants his children to achieve their own life goals, John-Boy gets inspired to write the novel about his family.
7222"The Statue"Ralph WaiteStory by : Sumner Long
Teleplay by : Earl Hamner
February 13, 1975 (1975-02-13)
Grandpa wins first prize in the church raffle: a statue of a young woman, donated by the Baldwin sisters. The statue is inspired by Edgar Allan Poe's poem Annabel Lee, but bears an uncanny resemblance to Grandpa's old girlfriend. Grandma recognizes it too, which causes a bit of strife. Grandpa decides to use it to decorate his and Grandma's grave, but she says she'd rather be buried in the cow pasture, so Grandpa relents and has the children dump it in Drucilla's Pond. One of John-Boy's stories, a thinly veiled and somewhat unflattering portrayal of the Baldwin sisters, has been accepted for publication. Still, he must decide if publishing it would be worth the hurt it would cause to Miss Mamie and Miss Emily.
7323"The Song"Richard ThomasStory by : Richard Carr
Teleplay by : Richard Carr and Armand Lanzano
February 20, 1975 (1975-02-20)
Ben and Jason's relationship is strained when Ben suggests Jason hire a girl who Ben likes, Sally Ann (Erin Moran), to sing his new song with him in Bobby Bigelow's band. The plan backfires on Ben when Sally falls for Jason instead. Ben sulks and refuses to join the family at the performance but listens to it on the radio. But Sally dedicates the song to Ben, which causes him to come to the performance and makeup with her hurriedly. The song, Will You Be Mine?, was written by Jon Walmsley (Jason). Meanwhile, John and Zeb join other local men for a wagered pool tournament at Ike's store to the disapproval of their wives.
7424"The Woman"Harvey S. LaidmanHindi BrooksFebruary 27, 1975 (1975-02-27)
John and Olivia plan a repeat ceremony for their 20th wedding anniversary, and John buys Olivia a dress for the occasion. The children paint a large picture of their house and family as a surprise gift to their parents. Meanwhile, during several days at Boatright University, John-Boy is assigned to welcome and escort around comely visiting poet Madeline Bennett (Laura Campbell), whom he had long admired. He becomes giddy and infatuated, impulsively packs his bags, and almost accompanies her back on the train to New York, finally coming to his senses only as she boards the train.
7525"The Venture"Ralph WaiteJoseph BonaduceMarch 6, 1975 (1975-03-06)
Things are looking up on the mountain, and the Waltons take a $500 loan from the bank to buy some faster equipment for the mill. When Grandpa and then John Sr. fall ill, the family faces missed deadlines and may lose their home. John-Boy pushes himself and everyone else too hard, trying to keep up. Eventually, he and Jason decide they must give up their dreams of college, to instead work and help the family until the community comes to their aid.

Season 4 (1975–1976)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
761"The Sermon"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteSeptember 11, 1975 (1975-09-11)
John-Boy is coaxed into preaching a sermon while Reverend Fordwick is away on his honeymoon. Meanwhile, Olivia teaches school for Mrs. Fordwick.
772"The Genius"Harry HarrisRobert WeverkaSeptember 18, 1975 (1975-09-18)
John-Boy brings his college friend Lyle (Dennis Kort), a nerdy 16-year-old genius, to visit the farm and tutor him in physics. Lyle has no social skills or sense of humor, talks only in facts and figures, is an agnostic, and everyone dislikes him. He does, however, take a particular interest in Mary Ellen, who returns his interest by playfully squirting him with the garden hose. After Jason bows out of performing in a play at a fund raiser, Lyle fills in, and the family finally accepts him. His response of their acceptance is dousing Mary Ellen's head with water.
783"The Fighter"Ivan DixonAndy WhiteSeptember 25, 1975 (1975-09-25)
A black prize fighter from Richmond starts work at the Walton farm, hoping to get physical exercise. Olivia and Grandma strongly disapprove of his profession, until learning that he wants to earn money to start a church.
794"The Prophecy"Harry HarrisMarion HargroveOctober 2, 1975 (1975-10-02)
John wrestles with feelings of failure as his high school reunion nears. At the reunion dinner held at their farmyard, he finally realizes, however, that his other classmates envy him for his loving wife and family. Note that actress Lynn Carlin who appears as Eulah Mae, appears in Seasons 5 and 6 as Sarah Griffith who marries Sheriff Bridges.
805"The Boondoggle"Ralph WaiteClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonOctober 9, 1975 (1975-10-09)
A government writer (Richard McKenzie) comes to Walton's Mountain to write a Guide to Virginia. His meddling research uncovers dark secrets about Judge Baldwin's actions during the Civil War, which greatly upsets the sisters until they realize their father had acted out of humanitarian motives.
816"The Breakdown"Ivan DixonJohn McGreeveyOctober 16, 1975 (1975-10-16)
Exhausted after trying to multi-task, Jason learns the hard way that you can't do everything you want to do at once. Meanwhile, John-Boy gets a job in the basement library at the college.
827"The Wing-Walker"Harvey S. LaidmanAndy WhiteOctober 23, 1975 (1975-10-23)
John-Boy and Jim Bob vie for the attention of a daring lady wing walker (Lee Purcell). Tom Bower, who would later become a recurring character in Season 5 as Mary Ellen's husband Dr. Curtis Willard, plays the pilot in this episode.
838"The Competition"Alf KjellinStory by : Nancy Greenwald
Teleplay by : Nancy Greenwald and Paul West
October 30, 1975 (1975-10-30)
Mary Ellen and Erin both fall in love with a forestry student staying and working at their house, who finally kisses Erin before deciding she is too young and he had better move on, breaking her heart. Olivia decides that she wants another child, but the doctor advises against another pregnancy. He arranges, however, for the family to care for an orphaned baby girl temporarily until the would-be adoptive parents are fully ready. Although Grandpa pretends to complain, the whole family enjoys the baby and regrets finally releasing her.
849"The Emergence"Alf KjellinHindi BrooksNovember 6, 1975 (1975-11-06)
Marsha Wollery, one of John-Boy's high school flames, returns to the mountain from Richmond. She plans on selling the family farm and giving the money to her arrogant and greedy city fiance. After she cannot sell the farm, the two break up, and John-Boy finds Marsha a better job. Olivia fills in as a substitute teacher and buys inexpensive eyeglasses for a neglected, older boy who badly needed them.
8510"The Loss"Alf KjellinJoan ScottNovember 13, 1975 (1975-11-13)
Olivia's niece returns to Walton's Mountain after the recent death of her husband. She grieves continually until finding some relief helping with a litter of kittens.
8611"The Abdication"Harvey S. LaidmanStory by : Paul West and Matt Robinson
Teleplay by : Matt Robinson
November 20, 1975 (1975-11-20)
As the United Kingdom's King Edward VIII abdicates his throne, John-Boy's friend A.J. Covington (George Dzundza) returns[4] to Walton's Mountain with a movie company, filming a movie he has written. A.J. has written a good story based on his prior experience on the Mountain but has a poor ear for dialects. His characters speak stereotypically, "hillbilly" dialog, which sets the onlookers laughing. John-Boy offers the director (James Karen) some suggestions on how to fix this, so the man asks him to rewrite the problem dialogue. The director (and the film's stars) are so impressed with the result that he fires Covington and offers John-Boy a screenwriting job. John-Boy is upset that his friend was fired, so he "abdicates" the offer. In a subplot, Mary Ellen is romantically attracted to A.J.'s English assistant (Stephen Collins).
8712"The Estrangement"Harry HarrisMichael Russnow & Tony KaydenDecember 4, 1975 (1975-12-04)
Young Wade (Richard Hatch) Walton's wife Vera and her baby return to Walton's Mountain, having run away from her unhappy marriage. She cites a drastic change in Wade's behavior since the government forced them off their property,[5] which causes her to suspect Wade is cheating on her. He is transporting moonshine for his grandfather Boone and quits his other job in anger when his boss J. D. Paulsen (Burton Gilliam) speaks to him about his declining performance. After the sheriff arrests Wade, John-Boy persuades Boone to bail him out, and John offers him a new job making use of his woodworking skills; he comes to his senses and patches things up with his wife. Meanwhile, Ben starts a home business shipping individual pine seedlings but has to stop after the sheriff tells him the seedlings were all too immature to thrive, and he has no sales license.
8813"The Nurse"Alf KjellinKathleen HiteDecember 11, 1975 (1975-12-11)
Mary Ellen leaves home for the weekend to take her entrance exam for nursing school. Unfortunately, she finds she's not properly prepared. The county nurse offers to tutor her in the algebra and chemistry she needs to pass the test in exchange for caring for a sick mother and her children. In the process, Mary Ellen tenderly breaks the news of her mother's death to her little daughter.
8914"The Intruders"Richard C. BennettSeth FreemanDecember 18, 1975 (1975-12-18)
Walton's Mountain isn't big enough for two sawmills! A rival sawmill, Murdock's, comes to town and bets John they can fill an order faster than the Waltons. Ben runs away from home and is finally discovered working for the rival, not realizing he is undermining his father's business. Grandpa makes up for this by cleverly tricking the Murdocks into thinking they can float their logs downriver on a raft, causing them to get stuck on a sandbar and lose the bet.
9015"The Search"Harry HarrisStory by : Ellen Corby
Teleplay by : Paul West
January 1, 1976 (1976-01-01)
Olivia, Jim Bob and Elizabeth find themselves stranded in the middle of the woods, with a storm brewing, after having a flat tire, and chasing after a hen. Searching for help, they encounter a cabin of hostile bootleggers.
9116"The Secret"Harvey S. LaidmanClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonJanuary 8, 1976 (1976-01-08)
Jim Bob cannot find his birth record on file, and suspects he may have been adopted. On further investigation, he learns a secret: that he had a twin brother who had died at birth.
9217"The Fox"Richard ThomasMax HodgeJanuary 15, 1976 (1976-01-15)
Ben plans on going into the fur business when a fox starts nosing around the farm. Meanwhile, Grandpa doesn't seem to want to go to the Spanish–American War veterans' reunion, even though he talks so much about his charge up San Juan Hill.
9318"The Burn Out"Harry HarrisJohn McGreeveyJanuary 22, 1976 (1976-01-22)
In a two-hour episode, a fire severely damages the second floor and kitchen of the Walton house. Having taken up the habit of smoking, John-Boy fears he may have started it by leaving a lit pipe, but the more likely cause is a space heater that Grandpa forgot to turn off. As John, Grandpa, and John-Boy make repairs, the family must parcel the younger children to friends and neighbors. John-Boy finally can restart the manuscript of his novel, which was destroyed in the fire. Ben moves into Yancy Tucker's cabin, oversleeps, and goes fishing with Yancy rather than school. Grandma and Grandpa stayed at a boarding house whose women enjoyed Grandpa's storytelling. A traumatized Elizabeth doesn't want to return home from the Godseys. Actress Pearl Shear makes her first of five appearances as Zuleika Dunbar.
9520"The Big Brother"Ralph WaiteJohn McGreeveyJanuary 29, 1976 (1976-01-29)
A runaway girl gets the attention of most of the Walton family who collects money for her bus travel home, the exception being Grandpa, who knows a con artist when he sees one.
9621"The Test"Harvey S. LaidmanKathleen HiteFebruary 5, 1976 (1976-02-05)
Maude, who gave her goat to the Waltons earlier in the series, doesn't adapt well to her strict confinement in the retirement home, while Olivia gets a job as a seamstress in a high-end fashion store. Olivia resigns after the store owner (Abby Dalton) wants her to take on management responsibility and travel extensively.
9722"The Quilting"Lawrence DobkinClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonFebruary 12, 1976 (1976-02-12)
Mary Ellen refuses to follow the country tradition of making a quilt to announce her eligibility to date boys, and Grandma doesn't like her attitude. John-Boy finally persuades Mary Ellen to go along.
9823"The House"Harvey S. LaidmanKirby TimmonsFebruary 19, 1976 (1976-02-19)
Grandma begins a petition to save the old Whitley house, while the county has contracted grandpa to tear the house down before any children are hurt playing in it. John-Boy, as editor, writes to suggest that people salvage parts out of the house. Jason plays piano in a music recital.
9924"The Fledgling"Harry HarrisEarl HamnerFebruary 26, 1976 (1976-02-26)
John-Boy is offered an amazing printing press for a good price by a retiring newsman. Despite being a college student, he gets a full-time job to pay for the press and a boarding house room near his college. After a while, however, he begins to realize that he's working too hard.
10025"The Collision"Richard ThomasJohn McGreeveyMarch 4, 1976 (1976-03-04)
John-Boy meets with the wealthy Selina again when she comes home from Vassar College. Her enthusiasm for the War in Spain and those reporting on the conflict cause John-Boy to struggle to decide where he belongs: Walton's Mountain or Spain. As he tries to define courage, Selina's family's financial problems suddenly come to light, causing a change in her plans. Meanwhile, Elizabeth is jealous of another schoolgirl who has fancier possessions. Eduard Franz appears as Selina's grandfather.

Season 5 (1976–1977)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1011"The First Edition"Lawrence DobkinJohn McGreeveySeptember 23, 1976 (1976-09-23)
The Blue Ridge Chronicle (John-Boy's newly founded newspaper) is open for business! The only problem is, the paper embarrasses the family, as it reports that Ben and his friends were caught breaking into a house. Meanwhile, Corabeth realizes she had only a "false pregnancy" and, believing she is barren and has disappointed Ike, almost deserts him.
1022"The Vigil"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteSeptember 30, 1976 (1976-09-30)
Grandma's struck ill. Trying to prove herself as a nurse, Mary Ellen treats her for influenza. But it turns out the problem is different—and life-threatening. Mary Ellen feels guilty over her misdiagnosis.
1033"The Comeback"Harvey S. LaidmanSeth FreemanOctober 7, 1976 (1976-10-07)
Jason becomes the new piano man at the Dew Drop Inn, much to the chagrin of Olivia and Grandma, who disapprove of drinking. He persuades a former bandleader named Red (Merle Haggard), who had been sequestered after the death of his son Seth (played by Ron Howard in a previous episode), to return to the stage. For the subplot, Yancey Tucker loves Cissy but is uneasy at the thought of marriage, so Cissy pretends interest in John-Boy to get Yancey to propose.
1044"The Baptism"Ralph WaiteAndy WhiteOctober 14, 1976 (1976-10-14)
A famous revival preacher (guest star John Karlen) is coming to town, and Esther and Olivia hope that John and Ben will be converted and baptized. John is almost struck by lightning during a storm, which some see as an omen. A peacock wanders onto the home place and is adopted by Jim-Bob, who nicknames him "Rover."
1055"The Fire Storm"Ralph SenenskyClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonOctober 21, 1976 (1976-10-21)
John-Boy's attempts at keeping Walton's Mountain residents up to date with current events don't work out so well, especially after his highly controversial attempt to copy excerpts of Mein Kampf in his newspaper. Erin enters a beauty contest.
1066"The Nightwalker"Harvey S. LaidmanPaul WestOctober 28, 1976 (1976-10-28)
A mysterious being stalks Walton's Mountain, seeming to spy on people. Jason books his band to play in Ike's new dance hall, but people are afraid to come. The prowler is finally found to be Lorin Hadley (Gary Tomlin), the mute son of a new neighbor Eva Hadley (Peggy Webber).
1077"The Wedding"Lawrence DobkinClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonNovember 4, 1976 (1976-11-04)
In a double-length episode, Mary Ellen surprises everyone by announcing her engagement to hospital intern David Spencer. Meanwhile, a new doctor, Curtis Willard (Tom Bower), arrives to practice in the community, though he and Mary Ellen don't get along well. He dislikes her attempts to reorganize his office, and she feels he talks too bluntly to patients. But she comes to decide she doesn't love David. Her love-hate relationship with Curtis ends in marriage after Curt returns from testifying in the capital about mine safety conditions.
1099"The Cloudburst"Harry HarrisPaul CooperNovember 11, 1976 (1976-11-11)
John-Boy sells most of his meadow to pay off his printing press so he can continue the Blue Ridge Chronicle, deeply upsetting Grandpa. He then is alarmed at learning the land company plans to buy up more small plots to do hydraulic gold mining in the community. After fainting while watching Curt perform an emergency tracheotomy, Mary Ellen is later encouraged when she successfully delivers Mrs. Fordwick's baby.
11010"The Great Motorcycle Race"Richard ThomasJohn Joseph[6]November 18, 1976 (1976-11-18)
Jim-Bob, though inexperienced, uses Ike's motorcycle to enter a local bike race, to Olivia's great alarm. Meanwhile, Ike and Corabeth go to the adoption agency to bring home their promised baby boy but return instead with 10-year-old Aimee Louise. Corabeth worries when Aimee does not immediately bond with them, but she finally shows affection.
11111"The Pony Cart"Ralph SenenskyJack MillerDecember 2, 1976 (1976-12-02)
The irascible Martha Corrine Walton, in her 90s, makes an unexpected return to Walton's Mountain and reminisces about her early life as the bride of a Civil War veteran. She soon gets on everyone's nerves as she begins adding her methods to the cooking and her opinions in the family's daily life. Ben buys a used pony cart, intending to re-sell it for a profit after making some improvements. Martha Corrine calls it a "shay" and paints flowers on the side of the cart. Ben takes the pony cart to her to visit her husband's grave; she has a heart attack. In this episode, veteran actress Beulah Bondi won an Emmy for Lead Actress in a Single Performance for her guest appearance as Martha Corrine Walton.
11212"The Best Christmas"Lawrence DobkinJohn McGreeveyDecember 9, 1976 (1976-12-09)
Olivia sets about making this Christmas 'the best we ever had', but a variety of emergency circumstances arise to keep each of the Walton children from coming home.
11313"The Last Mustang"Walter AlzmannCalvin Clements, Jr.December 16, 1976 (1976-12-16)
John-Boy, as a newspaper editor, gets tangled up in the coming sheriff's election, in which a handsome, polished stranger (John Fink) runs against the incumbent, down-to-earth Ep Bridges. When editor John-Boy refuses to endorse the new candidate, his staff threatens to retaliate by undermining the Waltons' lumber business. Meanwhile, Grandpa tries to help 'The Last Mustang' after being captured and breaks free again.
11414"The Rebellion"Harvey S. LaidmanKathleen HiteDecember 23, 1976 (1976-12-23)
Olivia, yearning for change, contemplates cutting her hair. When John protests, she decides on a perm from Corabeth instead, which is disastrous and ridiculed. Grandma, happy with things just the way they are, threatens to become a Methodist when the preacher asks her to share organ duties with Zelda Maynard (Audrey Christie), one of her fiercest rivals. Grandpa lands in hot water when he tries to mediate the dispute.
11515"The Ferris Wheel"Lawrence DobkinClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonJanuary 6, 1977 (1977-01-06)
Nightmares get the better of Elizabeth, who dreams she is trapped at the top of a carnival Ferris wheel. She discovers she has been suppressing a traumatic memory. Meanwhile, Ben is concerned that he is not growing in height.
11616"The Elopement"Harry HarrisHindi BrooksJanuary 13, 1977 (1977-01-13)
Chad Marshall returns to Walton's Mountain and proposes to Erin. They flee at night to awaken a Justice of the Peace, but she has a change of mind just before reciting the vows and the panicked arrival of her parents. The Walton children, minding Ike's store, inadvertently extend credit to Maude Gormley. When John-Boy visits Maude about her store debt, he discovers she paints beautiful bird pictures.
11717"John's Crossroad"Richard ThomasAndy White and Paul WestJanuary 20, 1977 (1977-01-20)
John gets a city job in Charlottesville, working in a stuffy, state government office for a tyrannical, controlling boss who is feared by his staff. They sometimes must stay overtime. Despite the money, John realizes the job is not for him and quits.
11818"The Career Girl"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteJanuary 27, 1977 (1977-01-27)
Erin has finally graduated high school; now, she must decide where her future lies. She works as a switchboard operator, briefly as a waitress in a roadhouse, and buys John-Boy a typewriter. Family members sneak a look at John-Boy's novel about them and the community.
11919"The Hero"Anthony BrandKathleen HiteFebruary 3, 1977 (1977-02-03)
Honor Day brings about the surprising fact that Sheriff Ep Bridges had won medals for bravery in World War I. John-Boy locates Sara Griffith (Lynn Carlin), a wartime ambulance driver who had been Ep's first love, and brought her to the community's memorial day ceremony.
12020"The Inferno"Harry HarrisClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonFebruary 10, 1977 (1977-02-10)
John-Boy wins a journalism contest, the prize being $25 and an all-expense-paid trip to cover the Hindenburg landing in Lakehurst, New Jersey. After witnessing the airship burst into flames, he returns home traumatized and unable to write about the disaster. Meanwhile, Curt and Mary Ellen are frustrated at not having private time alone from the family.
12121"The Heartbreaker"Ralph WaiteSeth FreemanFebruary 17, 1977 (1977-02-17)
Jason falls deeply in love with Curt's young sister (Linda Purl) who joins as a singer with their band and flatters and admires him. He doesn't realize that she takes relationships lightly, and she soon dumps him for another band member.
12222"The Long Night"Harry HarrisStory by : Katharyn Michaelian Powers and Claire Whitaker & Rod Peterson
Teleplay by : Claire Whitaker & Rod Peterson
February 24, 1977 (1977-02-24)
Grandpa tries to sneak into Esther's hospital room with flowers but is rebuffed and told that she needs rest. He feels down until he discovers that Aimee Godsey needs a grandfather. Aimee had been frustrated at Corabeth's emphasis on highbrow culture instead of letting her play and wander with Elizabeth outdoors.
12323"The Hiding Place"Walter AlzmannJohn McGreeveyMarch 3, 1977 (1977-03-03)
The Baldwin sisters' cousin has just come back home after 17 years of living as a German diplomat's wife in Europe. Because she keeps avoiding John-Boy's questions about current events in Germany, John-Boy thinks she's hiding something. After staying confined in bed with worry, she finally opens up about her disagreement with the Nazi regime. Meanwhile, Jason joins the National Guard, against his mother's wishes.
12424"The Go-Getter"Lawrence DobkinAndy White and Paul WestMarch 10, 1977 (1977-03-10)
Ben becomes a used car salesman, smooth-talking customers to buy old clunkers, acting cocky, and making fun of Jim-Bob's jalopy. Melody Thomas Scott guest stars as Darlene Jarvis, the daughter of Jim Bob's boss. Sheriff Bridges takes his date (a Richmond nurse he knew in World War I) to a movie and dinner at the Waltons, then they set off to marry, to everyone's delight.
12525"The Achievement"Harry HarrisDale Eunson and Andy WhiteMarch 17, 1977 (1977-03-17)
John-Boy is worried after a New York publishing company has kept his novel manuscript for six weeks with no reply. He goes there by bus to discover his manuscript lying in a stack waiting to be read. He meets with the publisher, a sympathetic woman who agrees to read his novel immediately. He also meets his friend Daisy from Virginia, who now works as a taxi dancer in a New York ballroom; they flirt, and she lends him a little money. While John-Boy reports this good news to his family, Mary Ellen and Curt also have special news of their own; she is pregnant.

Season 6 (1977–1978)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1261"The Hawk"Anthony BrandAndy WhiteSeptember 15, 1977 (1977-09-15)
Grandpa and Jim Bob try to trap a hawk who's been terrorizing the Waltons' chickens; while a new preacher (Peter Fox) comes to town, stirring up a big 'to do' among the ladies.
1272"The Stray"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteSeptember 22, 1977 (1977-09-22)
Young black boy Josh (Todd Bridges) is found in the Walton barn. Not knowing where he came from or who his parents are, the Waltons take him in for a while. He is found to have traveled alone from North Carolina. He tries to help with chores and by catching fish. Ketty Lester has a cameo as Mrs. Thomas, who runs an orphanage. Although he begs to be adopted by the Walton family, Verdie and Harley decide it is more acceptable to adopt him instead.
1283"The Recluse"Walter AlzmannSeth FreemanSeptember 29, 1977 (1977-09-29)
Ben leaves home to work at a Norfolk defense factory. Tensions run high between Grandpa and John as they take on too big a furniture contract to fill without Ben's help. Grandpa and Ben visit a Norfolk restaurant with hula dancers. Meanwhile, Jason makes friends with a reclusive woman (Linda Marsh) and leads her out of depression back into the world.
1294"The Warrior"Ralph SenenskyJoan ScottOctober 13, 1977 (1977-10-13)
A Cherokee Indian man (Jerado Decordovier) and his grandson come to stay with the Waltons; the man claims a sacred tribal burial ground is beneath the Walton barn, which he tries to burn down at night to "purify" the ground.
1305"The Seashore"Lawrence DobkinMarion HargroveOctober 20, 1977 (1977-10-20)
Contracted to fix the Baldwin sisters' beach cottage, John will be gone for at least a week, so Olivia decides the whole family needs a vacation there (except Ben). The Waltons find an English girl (Vickery Turner) squatting in the cottage, which seems to be hiding a secret; a suspicious Coast Guard questions her and Jason. Meanwhile, Ben is home doing all the family chores and frustrated not to have time alone with his girlfriend.
1316"The Volunteer"Philip LeacockKathleen HiteOctober 27, 1977 (1977-10-27)
When Erin declines G. W. Haines's (David Doremus) marriage proposal, he decides to join the U.S. Army. The Walton parents reluctantly let Erin visit G. W. overnight at his Army camp, where he makes unwanted advances to her. Maude Gormley (Merie Earle) sells her first painting at Ike's store and offers more paintings for sale through an art dealer.
1327"The Grandchild"Ralph SenenskyClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonNovember 3, 1977 (1977-11-03)
Mary Ellen is taken to the hospital with only false labor, and the family and neighbors are relieved when she finally delivers a baby, John Curtis, some days later. She had been scared to death of omens after encountering a very superstitious woman (Beth Raines). The woman, who'd recently had a stillborn baby, then kidnaps John Curtis out of jealousy. Meanwhile, a fire at the Dew Drop Inn leaves Jason jobless. He finds a piano job at a Charlottesville burlesque house, whose show Grandpa, Ben, and Jim Bob see. Jason later settles for a gospel band instead, to his mother's relief.
1349"The First Casualty"Harry HarrisAndy WhiteNovember 10, 1977 (1977-11-10)
Curt is called into the U.S. Army Medical Corps, then Walton's Mountain receives its first war casualty as G.W. is killed in a training exercise. Yancy Tucker hastily marries Sissy (Cissy Wellman) and then goes to enlist in the service, but is not accepted. Sissy tries to decorate and adapt to Yancy's rustic home and his animals.
13510"The Battle of Drucilla's Pond"Philip LeacockClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonNovember 17, 1977 (1977-11-17)
U.S. soldiers begin staging war games at Drucilla's Pond, killing fish and scaring the Waltons' cow into giving birth. Olivia enters her scenic paintings in a local art show, after which Grandpa secretly buys them back to keep.
13611"The Flight"Ralph WaiteMichael Raschella & Carole RaschellaDecember 1, 1977 (1977-12-01)
Jim-Bob becomes friends with a boy who says he's joining the Air Corps, but he seems to be hiding something. It turns out that he came to the area to check on his sister, who a nearby family adopted. Maude Gormley takes Elizabeth's goat, hoping that Elizabeth will visit her.
13712"The Milestone"Philip LeacockKathleen HiteDecember 8, 1977 (1977-12-08)
Olivia suddenly becomes emotionally fragile and runs away from her home, going to her Aunt Kate (Louise Latham) in her birth town for help.
13813"The Children's Carol"Lawrence DobkinJohn McGreeveyDecember 15, 1977 (1977-12-15)
Two British children escape the London Blitz to find safety in Walton's Mountain with the Baldwins and the Waltons for Christmas. Meanwhile, Jason contemplates whether he can fight in the impending war, and Olivia has a faith crisis as she can't understand how God could allow war.
14015"The Celebration"Gwen ArnerMarion HargroveDecember 22, 1977 (1977-12-22)
The Waltons are excited to learn that John will own the mill after two more payments and be completely clear of debt. However, Ike has a financial emergency when he cannot sell a large supply of refrigerators, so John agrees to lend Ike the money so his store will not be foreclosed. The ladies conspire to find a match for Reverend Buchanan; he shocks them by dating Marsha Woolery.
14116"The Rumor"Ralph WaiteKathleen HiteJanuary 5, 1978 (1978-01-05)
Flossie Brimmer's brother-in-law Willie (Mathew Anden) and his family relocate from Germantown, Pennsylvania to Walton's Mountain. A neighbor circulates a rumor that they are German spies, especially after they show interest in Jim Bob's short-wave radio. John Sr. defends the innocent man and hires him at his sawmill. The neighbors are finally convinced of the family's innocence after a suspicious package the family receives at Ike's post office turns out to be only medicine.
14217"Spring Fever"Richard ChaffeeClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonJanuary 12, 1978 (1978-01-12)
Ben and Jim Bob begin to act hostile toward each other, culminating in them competing to date each other's girlfriends. The family repaints the house.
14318"The Festival"Gwen ArnerMichael McGreeveyJanuary 26, 1978 (1978-01-26)
Jason and Josh, the runaway boy found in Walton's barn, become a great musical team, but some doors are closed to them because Josh is black. After they are excluded from the nearby town's festival, the boy's adoptive father, Harley, counsels him bitterly not to trust white people. However, Jason and Josh organize their talent show instead.
14419"The Anniversary"Walter AlzmannClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonFebruary 2, 1978 (1978-02-02)
John and Olivia's 25th Anniversary brings many surprises: the children do too well organizing a private party, Olivia arranges for the installation of their first phone, and John builds her a romantic gazebo. At work, Mary Ellen reunites with the ex-fiance she jilted to marry Curt, while her absent Army husband is attracted to a lovely nurse. Curt surprises them all by coming home on a weekend pass at the end of the day, and the party turns into a late-night picnic on Walton's Mountain.
14520"The Family Tree"Lawrence DobkinTeleplay by : Thomas Hood
Story by : Joyce Perry & Thomas Hood
February 9, 1978 (1978-02-09)
Elizabeth becomes pen pals with a soldier. The only problem: she says she's 18 and sends him a picture of Erin, saying it's her. Meanwhile, Jason takes Verdie to a farmhouse to find information about her ancestors who had been slaves there, but they are rebuffed by the bitter widow who refuses them access to papers in her attic. Grandpa Zeb finally convinces the owner to allow them into the attic, where they find items of great interest.
14621"The Ordeal"Lawrence DobkinPaul WestFebruary 16, 1978 (1978-02-16)
Due to Jim Bob and Ben's negligence, Elizabeth has a bad accident, tumbling off a stack of loose logs she has climbed on to reach a bird's nest. The family must help keep Elizabeth's determination high when the doctor is unsure whether she will ever walk again. Erin minds the house while Olivia stays with Elizabeth. After a hospital stay, she is sent home wearing leg braces. Virginia Gregg appears as self-professed "healer" Ada Corley.
14823"The Return"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteMarch 16, 1978 (1978-03-16)
John-Boy returns to Walton's Mountain on assignment to write a news story after receiving a letter from Olivia saying that hard times have hit Jefferson County and jobs are scarce. John-Boy decides to reopen the Guthrie coal mine to create more jobs; his family will begin by carpentry to shore up the mine shaft. But when many of the local men (including John, Jason, Ben, Jim-Bob, Harley, and Ike) are trapped in a cave-in while exploring the site, John-Boy seems to be the person to blame.
15025"The Revelation"Gwen ArnerD.C. Fontana & Richard FontanaMarch 23, 1978 (1978-03-23)
John-Boy proposes to Daisy in New York City, and she accepts, so they return to Walton's Mountain to make preparations. However, a wartime assignment for John-Boy in London and a secret about Daisy's past cut their plans short. Daisy is revealed to have a young daughter, born out of wedlock and raised by Daisy's mother in Lynchburg. Elizabeth and her friend George open up a lemonade stand in the subplot, and Grandpa spikes their product with the Baldwin Sisters' "recipe."
15126"Grandma Comes Home"Ralph SenenskyClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonMarch 30, 1978 (1978-03-30)
Grandma, barely able to speak, finally returns home after being in the hospital for over a year. Grandpa is thrilled but thinks there is something wrong with his "old woman." A boy gives Elizabeth a piglet for her 4-H project, but it keeps running away.

Season 7 (1978–1979)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1521"The Empty Nest"Philip LeacockClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonSeptember 21, 1978 (1978-09-21)
After Grandpa's death, John Sr. struggles to handle a busy lumber contract alone, taking out a bank loan. Erin, Mary Ellen, and the baby move to a Charlottesville apartment but then return home. John goes to Richmond to see a wealthy lumber contractor, who is at first cold and evasive but then hosts John and Olivia to dinner, and offers him an important position as head of procurement, but which would require the family to move there. Mr. Murdock persuades John instead to stay on the mountain and form a joint lumber enterprise with him to meet the Army's growing needs. Ben experiences problems when he takes over John's order in his short absence. Jim-Bob purchases and repairs an old jukebox. Zuleika Dunbar (Pearl Shear) purchases the old boarding house, closed since Flossie Brimmer died.
1543"The Calling"Gwen ArnerKathleen HiteSeptember 28, 1978 (1978-09-28)
Jim-Bob falls for the Baldwins' pretty visiting Catholic cousin (Stacey Nelkin), enjoying time with her outdoors, before she breaks his heart by joining a convent. Nuns Sister Theresa (Mitzi Hoag) and Sister Scolastica (Jeanette Nolan) visit the community, shocking bigoted Cora Beth. Meanwhile, Ben hires a man at the mill, not realizing that, although friendly, he's a drunkard, sloppy and unreliable; John Sr. orders Ben to fire the man.
1554"The Moonshiner"Lawrence DobkinJeb RosebrookOctober 12, 1978 (1978-10-12)
Boone Walton, finally caught running his moonshine business, is convicted to a jail sentence. Jason offers to pay the fine and take Boone into his custody, hoping to reform the older man. Boone helps the Baldwin sisters who have misplaced their father's recipe. Unfortunately, Boone can't stay dry and runs off. John-Boy's former fiancee Daisy and her child visit briefly, en route to New York City.
1565"The Obsession"Gwen ArnerJuliet PackerOctober 19, 1978 (1978-10-19)
Mary Ellen becomes dependent on amphetamines to keep her going during the stressful time leading up to her nursing exams, and gets passing grades after struggling to resist further pills. Meanwhile, Cissy Tucker (Cissy Wellman) walks out on Yancy, tired of their dirty home and Yancy's animals in the house, and starts to file for divorce. Elizabeth attempts to reunite the couple.
1576"The Changeling"Lawrence DobkinRobert PiroshOctober 26, 1978 (1978-10-26)
Strange happenings coincide with the coming of Elizabeth's 13th birthday. Meanwhile, Jason becomes the host of a new radio show, giving relationship advice.
1587"The Portrait"Ralph SenenskyJohn DunkelNovember 2, 1978 (1978-11-02)
Erin wrestles with feelings of love and fear toward an artist (Jared Martin) who has devastating memories of German-occupied Paris and who attempts to paint her in a mural he has almost completed. Meanwhile, Jim-Bob and Elizabeth buy a canary for Grandma but can't get him to sing.
1598"The Captive"Ralph WaiteRay CunneffNovember 9, 1978 (1978-11-09)
Corabeth, going through a midlife crisis, tries numerous failed business endeavors such as a dance studio, all the while seeking refuge in alcohol. Meanwhile, Jim-Bob tries to teach Elizabeth to drive.
1609"The Illusion"Walter AlzmannJohn McGreeveyNovember 16, 1978 (1978-11-16)
Verdie Foster's business-educated daughter, Esther (Joan Pringle), comes home from New York and creates turbulent feelings with her revolutionary (for the 1940s) ideas about a black woman's place in society. Erin fights to get J.D. Pickett (Lewis Arquette) to hire Esther as personnel manager at his inefficient production plant.
16110"The Beau"Gwen ArnerD.C. Fontana & Richard FontanaNovember 23, 1978 (1978-11-23)
One of Grandma's old beaus (Arthur Space), a widower from Richmond, comes to visit and begins to bond with her, taking her on several enjoyable dates. Meanwhile, Jim-Bob and Yancy distill alcohol strong enough to run their cars on after gas is rationed. Corabeth adds stylish hats to the store inventory.
16211"Day of Infamy"Harry HarrisPaul SavageDecember 7, 1978 (1978-12-07)
Just as Mary Ellen prepares to join Curt in Hawaii, the attack on Pearl Harbor occurs, forcing the U.S. into World War II and leaving Mary Ellen and Verdie concerned for their loved ones stationed there. Meanwhile, Ben takes out a girl nicknamed "Sinful Cindy" (Robin Eisenman), whom Olivia does not approve of. (This episode was first aired on Pearl Harbor Day, 1978.)
16312"The Yearning"Nell CoxJuliet PackerDecember 14, 1978 (1978-12-14)
Elizabeth, though young, has a big crush on the new minister, who rooms with the family while skunk odor is removed from his home. Meanwhile, Erin helps the Baldwin sisters write a book from their father's journals, and they are astonished to find that their father had hidden a long-ago letter from Ashley Longworth to Miss Emily.
16413"The Boosters"Harry HarrisRobert PiroshDecember 28, 1978 (1978-12-28)
Wanting to make a profit off of the now heavy traffic near Walton's Mountain, Ben, Ike, and Corabeth decide to build an auto court and landscaped town square. They mistakenly believe a busy factory is coming. Yancey studies barbering, practicing on his reluctant neighbors.
16514"The Conscience"Gwen ArnerMichael McGreeveyJanuary 4, 1979 (1979-01-04)
Trouble breaks out in the community and the family when Jason considers signing up as a conscientious objector. Jim-Bob can't wait to join the Air Corps, however, and gets a tattoo.
16615"The Obstacle"William H. BushnellCurtis DwightJanuary 11, 1979 (1979-01-11)
John-Boy's old college roommate Mike Paxton (Dennis Redfield) stays with the Waltons after he is injured when his ship is torpedoed by a German U-boat. Meanwhile, Ike and Ben perform a song-and-dance routine to audition for the USO.
16716"The Parting"Harry HarrisKathleen HiteJanuary 18, 1979 (1979-01-18)
Olivia receives unwelcome news from the doctor. Meanwhile, Elizabeth is making a family cookbook and discovers a surprise ingredient in Grandma's sponge cake. Also, Jim-Bob drives the whole family crazy by taking up the accordion.
16817"The Burden"Harry HarrisE.F. WallengrenJanuary 25, 1979 (1979-01-25)
With Olivia away, Jim-Bob runs wild carousing until a near-death experience convinces him it's a sign from God to join the ministry. He continually quotes Bible verses until realizing that ordination, unfortunately, requires years of training. Meanwhile, Elizabeth bothers the family with her bug collecting.
16918"The Pin-Up"Larry StewartJuliet PackerFebruary 8, 1979 (1979-02-08)
Ben begins dabbling in photography and jokingly takes a revealing picture of Erin, which quickly becomes the popular pin-up picture at Camp Lee. Though Erin enjoys the fan mail, John strongly disapproves. Meanwhile, Mary Ellen becomes overly protective of John Curtis and neglects her nursing career.
17019"The Attack"Harry HarrisE.F. WallengrenFebruary 15, 1979 (1979-02-15)
With the stress of the price freeze, food rationing, and extra business, Ike suffers a heart attack. Corabeth blames herself for Ike's attack. The Walton children offer to run the store while he recovers in the hospital. They are selling a mule. Meanwhile, Ben and Jim-Bob enter the molasses business to resolve the sugar shortage at Walton's Mountain.
17120"The Legacy"Gwen ArnerStory by : Michael Learned
Teleplay by : William Parker
February 22, 1979 (1979-02-22)
Miss Emily's memories of her old beau Ashley Longworth are stirred up when his handsome son Ashley Jr. (Jonathan Frakes) arrives on leave from the Navy, with news of his father. A confused Miss Emily thinks he is her Ashley returning to her, which causes problems for Erin, who also falls for him. Elizabeth has her problems with just growing up.
17221"The Outsider"Philip LeacockRobert PiroshMarch 1, 1979 (1979-03-01)
The Walton family is shocked when Ben returns from a trip with a wife, Cindy. The young couple takes up residence in the shed next to the house and has petty disagreements until the others convince Ben that he is bossing her and should back off. Ike buys Corabeth a decorative outdoor fountain.
17322"The Torch"David F. WheelerRod PetersonMarch 8, 1979 (1979-03-08)
John's old high school flame (Dorothy Tristan) buys and operates the Dew Drop Inn, while Elizabeth, Erin, and Cindy attempt to open a canteen for the soldiers on leave from the camp at Rockfish.
17423"The Tailspin"Walter AlzmannClaire WhitakerMarch 15, 1979 (1979-03-15)
Jim-Bob's sky-high dreams of becoming a pilot crash and burn when he learns his eyesight isn't 20/20. Corabeth tries to tutor him in classic literature. He gets prescription glasses but will not wear them. He finally leaves to enlist in the Army but stays home and studies aircraft mechanics at the last minute. Meanwhile, a friend of Curt's (Kevin Geer) from his hometown, stationed nearby, visits, and after some hesitation, Mary Ellen joins him on a date.
17524"Founder's Day"Ralph WaiteKathleen HiteMarch 22, 1979 (1979-03-22)
The Waltons, Godseys and Baldwins compete to see who is the founding family of Walton's Mountain. Jason's strict music professor (Dean Jagger) criticizes his new composition, until he hears Jason play it on Founders Day.

Season 8 (1979–1980)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1761"The Home Front"Harry HarrisClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonSeptember 20, 1979 (1979-09-20)
John becomes the local draft-board director while Erin tries to get a raise from J.D. Pickett. John must deal with a furious father (George DiCenzo) whose son John drafted, dies on his troop transport headed for Europe, and also with his feelings of loss when he receives a telegram stating John-Boy is missing in action.
1783"The Kinfolk"Philip LeacockE.F. WallengrenSeptember 27, 1979 (1979-09-27)
Cousin (Olivia's aunt) Rose (Peggy Rea) and her two mischievous grandchildren, Jeffrey (Keith Coogan) and Serena (Martha Nix Wade), arrive at the Waltons' house. The children repeatedly cause trouble, including shoplifting, driving a car into a fence, and starting a brush fire. Ike and Jim-Bob build an air-raid siren, which Jeffrey sets off accidentally.
1794"The Diploma"Gwen ArnerKathleen HiteOctober 4, 1979 (1979-10-04)
John discovers that he never received his high-school diploma because he enlisted for World War I before he would have graduated. The Army refuses to do business with him if he cannot produce it, so he must take an equivalency exam. Mary Ellen takes over for the county nurse (who has joined the army) and must earn the trust of the skeptical backwoods people (Lane Bradbury and Les Lannom) who refuse her help for their ill children.
1805"The Innocents"Gwen ArnerJuliet PackerOctober 11, 1979 (1979-10-11)
Olivia creates an onsite daycare facility for the children whose mothers are working at J. D. Pickett's steel plant, instead of Mr. Pickett's proposal to use the space for a tavern. Ike takes dancing lessons from Rose, but Corabeth starts to suspect he is having an affair.
1816"The Starlet"Philip LeacockD.C. Fontana & Richard FontanaOctober 18, 1979 (1979-10-18)
A Hollywood director (Henry Darrow) shooting a war film at Pickett's plant tells Erin she could have a career in the movies. She and Mary Ellen decided to move to California after realizing the defense plants pay more than J.D. Pickett does. But Mr. Pickett and the family are eventually relieved when the girls realize the movie director was only flattering Erin. The Baldwin sisters organize a party for soldiers at their home but are disappointed when no one comes, so Jason takes drastic action.
1827"The Journal"Philip LeacockRobert PiroshOctober 25, 1979 (1979-10-25)
With John-Boy still missing in action, the manuscript he wrote before the assignment is waiting to be published, but John and Olivia must sign in John-Boy's absence; they try to locate him through the Red Cross. The family's hound dog Reckless, whom Jeffrey has become attached to, dies of old age while romping through the woods with Jeffrey.
1838"The Lost Sheep"Walter AlzmannE.F. WallengrenNovember 1, 1979 (1979-11-01)
After experiencing combat, Ashley Longworth Jr. (Jonathan Frakes) visits on leave and proposes to Erin that they marry immediately. Still, Erin has difficulty adjusting to the loss of his faith and the changes in his behavior. Rose's granddaughter Serena becomes Elizabeth's shadow.
1849"The Violated"Walter AlzmannRobert PiroshNovember 8, 1979 (1979-11-08)
In part one of a two-part story, Olivia is shocked when she discovers why Darcy Thatcher (Antoinette Stella), wife of young soldier Frank Thatcher (Kelly Ward), is no longer responding to his letters. Corabeth receives a large inheritance, buys a luxury car, and talks of retiring. The Waltons receive news about John-Boy.
18510"The Waiting"Philip LeacockKathleen HiteNovember 22, 1979 (1979-11-22)
In the conclusion of a two-part story, the Waltons finally hear that John-Boy has been found in a hospital in Europe and transferred to Washington D.C. They visit him in the hospital, finding him bandaged, unconscious, and, incidentally, with a completely different face. Olivia moves there and becomes a Red Cross caseworker and befriends a young amputee who has no family.
18611"The Silver Wings"Stan LathanMichael McGreeveyNovember 29, 1979 (1979-11-29)
Jim-Bob falls for an attractive older woman, the wife of an Air Corps pilot, and helps her do home repairs. After he gives her perfume, she realizes he has become too obsessed and tells him they must just be friends. Then she learns her husband was killed in action. (the plot is loosely based on the film/novel "Summer of '42"). Jim-Bob takes his first ride in a biplane. Rose's granddaughter Serena works on scout merit badges, then wanders into the woods at night.
18712"The Wager"Gwen ArnerStory by : Claylene Jones
Teleplay by : E.F. Wallengren
December 13, 1979 (1979-12-13)
Mary Ellen and Erin try to prove they can do anything as well as men, so they enter the 1st Annual Run and Ride Race in Rockfish and eagerly exercise (with Elizabeth coaching) to train for the race.
18813"The Spirit"Herbert HirschmanKathleen HiteDecember 20, 1979 (1979-12-20)
A series of thefts worries the community, while Jeffrey makes friends with a mysterious visitor (Ned Bellamy) on Walton's Mountain, who is an escaped German prisoner. Corabeth's holiday pageant is cancelled.
18914"The Fastidious Wife"Gwen ArnerLoraine DespresDecember 27, 1979 (1979-12-27)
Cindy follows a book's advice on how to be a good wife, but ends up exhausting herself. Rose's grandchildren adopt a cat which has a litter of kittens.
19015"The Unthinkable"Ralph WaiteDan UllmanJanuary 3, 1980 (1980-01-03)
Jason realizes the full horrors of war when his Jewish fellow soldier Ted Lupinsky (Todd Susman) reveals that his grandfather was killed in a Nazi extermination camp. Jason invites him to stay with the Walton family over the weekend. Meanwhile, Elizabeth must deal with being teased and called a "teacher's pet" by her friends when she earns straight A's on her report card.
19116"The Idol"Gwen ArnerJuliet PackerJanuary 10, 1980 (1980-01-10)
Elizabeth makes great friends with the new progressive school teacher, Ms. Lamphere (Susan Krebs), but then discovers her friend has a terminal illness. The teacher devotes a class session to childbirth over Corabeth's objections. Meanwhile, as the time nears for Cindy and Ben's baby to arrive, Ben waits it out drinking. Ben cannot be found when Cindy goes into labor, so the Waltons escort her to the hospital, giving birth to their daughter Virginia.
19217"The Prodigals"Stan LathanRobert PiroshJanuary 17, 1980 (1980-01-17)
Josh and Jeffrey get into major trouble when they crapshoot. Jeffrey steals money from Ike's store, and Josh is blamed for the theft. The truth finally comes out after Jeffrey tries to run away. Meanwhile, Ben, although married, wrestles with whether to join the Navy.
19318"The Remembrance"Herbert HirschmanMarion HargroveJanuary 24, 1980 (1980-01-24)
Grandpa's childhood friend, the independent Cousin Zadok (Woody Chambliss), hikes a long distance to Walton's Mountain to keep a 20-year-old appointment. He charms the family with his homespun wit. Zadok wills his experimental orchard to the University and gives the Waltons a family-heirloom fiddle. Jason meets a beautiful young WAC officer on base, who is annoyed at him, but later visits the Walton family.
19419"The Inspiration"Ralph WaiteE.F. WallengrenJanuary 31, 1980 (1980-01-31)
Grandma returns home and meets the new housekeeper, Rose. Miss Mamie refuses to have cataract surgery, so John and Mary Ellen move Grandma in with the Baldwins to convince the sisters that surgery is the right thing to do. Elizabeth tries different ways to get a certain boy to ask her to an upcoming dance but ends up going with someone else (Tony Becker).
19520"The Last Straw"Harry HarrisWilliam ParkerFebruary 7, 1980 (1980-02-07)
One thing after another goes wrong for John, who is swamped with orders at the mill. When the motor from the old power saw blows out, it becomes the "last straw" for John, and he quits the lumber business. Jeffrey builds a racing cart for a school project and hopes Ike will bring the All American Soap Box Derby to Walton's Mountain.
19621"The Traveling Man"Herbert HirschmanKathleen HiteFebruary 14, 1980 (1980-02-14)
Stanley Perkins (William Schallert), an old beau of Rose's who danced the nights away with her back in Baltimore, comes to Walton's Mountain and proposes to her, even planning to buy a house nearby. However, she realizes he wants to move to California to take a better sales position.
19722"The Furlough"Harry HarrisJuliet PackerFebruary 21, 1980 (1980-02-21)
John-Boy returns to Walton's Mountain, physically healthy but mentally tormented by the fact that he cannot remember the plane crash he was in. The girlfriend of his drowned co-pilot visits him. Ike ignores his military draft notice and is arrested for evasion, until the authorities realize he is overage.
19823"The Medal"Walter AlzmannRod PetersonFebruary 28, 1980 (1980-02-28)
Mary Ellen falls for a fiery young Mexican-American paratrooper (Enrique Castillo) whose life Curt saved at Pearl Harbor. He gets into a scuffle with some sailors who insult him at Godsey's Store. Corabeth encounters a former admirer who begs her to meet him for a romantic tryst at his hotel before he is sent overseas.
19924"The Valediction"Harry HarrisClaire WhitakerMarch 13, 1980 (1980-03-13)
Jim-Bob contemplates failing a school examination so he won't have to be valedictorian. Once he graduates, he and his classmates enlist in the military. Substitute-teacher Corabeth suggests a too-frilly graduation ceremony. Meanwhile, all the Walton boys are sent overseas for active duty when the Allies invade France. Erin gets a "Dear Joan" letter from Ashley Longworth Jr.
"The Waltons: A Decade of The Waltons"Harry Harris & Philip LeacockEarl HamnerMay 22, 1980 (1980-05-22)
As the family prepare a surprise party for Grandma's birthday, they reminisce (via flashbacks) about various events in their lives.

Season 9 (1980–1981)

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
2001"The Outrage"Philip LeacockClaire Whitaker & Rod PetersonNovember 27, 1980 (1980-11-27)
Verdi's husband Harley (Hal Williams) is accused of escaping prison for a murder (which was in self-defense) 9 years ago and is reluctantly arrested by Sheriff Bridges. Meanwhile, Elizabeth spends her time with her new horse Molly; Corabeth resigns from the general store when Ike accuses her of being too much of a businesswoman and not enough of a wife. John fights to clear Harley's name by traveling to Warm Springs, Georgia. He gets President Roosevelt to issue Harley an official pardon just before the President's sudden death, which the nation mourns.
2023"The Pledge"Lawrence DobkinKathleen HiteDecember 4, 1980 (1980-12-04)
Mary Ellen attempts to enroll in medical school to become a doctor after the community's beloved "Sweet Billy" (Richard Lineback) dies, but she is discouraged by the school's sexist Dean. Meanwhile, Jason receives many presents for his birthday as he and John-Boy fight in France.
2034"The Triumph"Philip LeacockRobert PiroshDecember 18, 1980 (1980-12-18)
V-E Day arrives (8 May 1945), but Jason and his squad must contend with a German sniper who doesn't know it's over. Ben still deals with the Japanese in the Pacific. In other subplots, Jim-Bob catches a very slow ride toward home on a mule cart, the Godseys are caught and called before a panel for occasionally selling groceries without ration stamps, and Ike's store is burglarized.
2045"The Premonition"Bernard McEveetyE.F. WallengrenDecember 25, 1980 (1980-12-25)
John-Boy falls deeply in love with a French girl in Paris. Cindy dreams she sees a vision of Ben, then learns that the Japanese captured him and some of his fellow seamen.
2056"The Pursuit"Philip LeacockMichael McGreeveyJanuary 1, 1981 (1981-01-01)
Jim-Bob comes home on leave but runs into trouble when a bad girl (Jennifer Jason Leigh) arrives claiming to be pregnant with his child. Mary Ellen finds the girl is only faking a pregnancy. Meanwhile, Jason reunites with Antoinette (Toni) in Paris, and Ben and his navy buddies defy the Japanese commandant in the POW camp by raising a makeshift US flag.
2067"The Last Ten Days"Bernard McEveetyMarion HargroveJanuary 8, 1981 (1981-01-08)
Ben and his fellow POWs are worried they might be executed after the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki to ensure the end of the war. Meanwhile, Jason and Toni have differing plans for their future together.
2078"The Move"Harvey S. LaidmanKathleen HiteJanuary 15, 1981 (1981-01-15)
Ben returns from the Pacific theater and enthusiastically plans to go away to Engineering college. But he changes his mind and agrees to stay in the sawmill after the family receives the unwelcome news that Olivia's tuberculosis has recurred; she has to go to an Arizona sanatorium, and John decides to go with her.
2089"The Whirlwind"Nell CoxClaire WhitakerJanuary 22, 1981 (1981-01-22)
Jason bites off more than he can chew when he buys the Dew Drop Inn and tries to repair it for reopening. Reopening night proves a success as the neighbors come and celebrate. Mary Ellen, believing her husband was killed at Pearl Harbor, accepts Jonesy's marriage proposal until she receives shocking news that makes her break the engagement.
20910"The Tempest"Gabrielle BeaumontE.F. WallengrenFebruary 5, 1981 (1981-02-05)
Mary Ellen goes in search of her supposedly late husband in a little town in Florida after receiving information that a Curtis Packer is alive and the spitting image of her own Curt (now played by Scott Hylands). When she finds him, he initially pretends amnesia, then reveals his identity and admits that due to his injury in the bombing of Pearl Harbor (he was left impotent), he cannot father any more children. Meanwhile, Jonesy is hired by J.D. Pickett and is immediately made Erin's boss, but she resigns until Pickett begs her to return, offering a substantial raise. Jonesy then resigns, reunites with a returning Mary Ellen, and becomes a geology professor at Boatright. Corabeth starts a realtor business and tries to convince the Baldwins to sell and move.
21011"The Carousel"Herbert HirschmanRobert PiroshFebruary 12, 1981 (1981-02-12)
After Cindy's father dies in a car accident, she discovers that she was adopted. She goes about finding out about her past, eventually meeting her birth mother. Meanwhile, Drew moves in with the Waltons while his family visits his ill grandmother in Richmond, to the delight of Elizabeth.
21112"The Hot Rod"Bob SweeneyScott HamnerFebruary 19, 1981 (1981-02-19)
Having just been discharged from the military, Jim-Bob and Jodie carouse and cause much trouble with their new 'hot rod' car until the sheriff straightens them out. The Baldwin sisters' still is discovered by the government, and they came to dismantle it. Ike helps them find a way to continue making the recipe.[7]
21213"The Gold Watch"Walt GilmoreJuliet PackerFebruary 26, 1981 (1981-02-26)
Stanley Perkins, Rose's salesman beau, returns from his 'dream sales territory' out west. But he seems to be hiding some personal secret. He is hired at Godsey's store and proves very helpful until an incident causes nervous flashbacks. Meanwhile, Toni tries to help Jason out when the Dew Drop Inn's business starts to decline.
21314"The Beginning"Lawrence DobkinKathleen HiteMarch 5, 1981 (1981-03-05)
Walton's Mountain receives a new minister, Reverend Tom Marshall, who proceeds to renovate the dilapidated church with the assistance of the Waltons and friends. Meanwhile, Jason and Toni consider marriage, but embarrassment over religious differences threatens their plans.
21415"The Pearls"James SheldonMary WorrellMarch 12, 1981 (1981-03-12)
Corabeth's flapper-like sister Orma Lee (Ronnie Claire Edwards in a dual role) arrives and creates fun and concern in the community, while Elizabeth tries running away to visit her parents, who are at an Arizona sanitarium. She is found at the nearby bus station.
21516"The Victims"Lawrence DobkinJuliet PackerMarch 19, 1981 (1981-03-19)
The Waltons involve the sheriff as they help rescue the battered wife (Carol Jones) of a violent veteran (Ben Andrews) who has flashbacks of combat, while Jim-Bob is cheated as he tries his hand in the war surplus market.
21617"The Threshold"Herbert HirschmanScott HamnerApril 2, 1981 (1981-04-02)
John-Boy returns home and tries out for a job in Boatwright University's brand new television department, but must convince the trustees with a speech. Meanwhile, Jim-Bob makes a TV set to watch John-Boy. Another woman competes with Rose for Stanley's affections. Rose tries to lose weight, and the Walton girls make her a stylish dress.
21718"The Indiscretion"James SheldonE.F. WallengrenMay 7, 1981 (1981-05-07)
Ike and Corabeth come to blows after Corabeth finds old love letters and suspects Ike is seeing another woman. Ike talks her into staying in the marriage. Drew boldly asks Elizabeth to spend the night together, but she declines.
21819"The Heartache"Herbert HirschmanKathleen HiteMay 14, 1981 (1981-05-14)
Stanley Perkins once again proposes to Rose, and she accepts. However, after discovering she has a heart condition, she breaks the engagement, not wanting to keep him from his dream of traveling. Will they ever recover their relationship? Cindy discovers she dislikes working at the dress shop and would rather stay at the farm.
21920"The Lumberjack"Harvey S. LaidmanCarol ZeitzMay 21, 1981 (1981-05-21)
Erin falls for Paul Northridge (Morgan Stevens), the handsome son of a wealthy lumberman (Richard Eastham). Ike and Jim-Bob try a get-rich-quick scheme by hunting for uranium with a geiger counter.
22021"The Hostage"Herbert HirschmanMarjorie FowlerMay 28, 1981 (1981-05-28)
After Mary Ellen saves a minor from an arranged marriage with a pervert, the Walton family must contend with a very disgruntled groom when he kidnaps Elizabeth. Guest star: Mary Wickes
22122"The Revel"Harry HarrisScott HamnerJune 4, 1981 (1981-06-04)

John-Boy goes to New York City again to submit his third book for publication. But after his manuscript is rejected, he feels sorry for himself and returns home feeling like a failure. Meanwhile, the Baldwin sisters plan an elegant reunion ball for their finishing school class, but no one comes except the neighbors.

  • NOTE: This episode is the series finale. CBS cancelled the show due to declining ratings, and Earl Hamner Jr and the producers also felt that the series had run its course, with cast and the crew ready to move on to other projects.

Reunion movies (1982–1997)

TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
A Wedding on Walton's MountainLee PhilipsMarjorie Fowler and Claylene JonesFebruary 22, 1982 (1982-02-22)
It is 1947, and plans for Erin and Paul's wedding are disrupted by the unexpected return of her ex-beau Ashley Longworth Jr., who is now a widower. John visits from Arizona to help Ben and Paul save the family lumber business.
Mother's Day on Walton's MountainGwen ArnerJuliet Law PackerMay 9, 1982 (1982-05-09)
Mary Ellen and Jonesy finally marry. However, as Mother's Day approaches, she finds herself missing her mother, Olivia, still recovering in a sanitarium in Arizona. After Mary Ellen is hurt when her car collides with a deer and is advised by a doctor never to get pregnant again, she becomes afraid that her new husband will lose interest in her. Meanwhile, Aimee Godsey [played by DeAnna Robbins in this and the next movie] returns home from boarding school, but her flirtatious and sophisticated behavior alienates her local friends.
A Day for Thanks on Walton's MountainHarry HarrisKathleen HiteNovember 22, 1982 (1982-11-22)

Approaching Thanksgiving Day 1947, Elizabeth feels sad about those who cannot be there, including her boyfriend Drew, her parents, and John-Boy. Also, newlyweds Erin and Paul want to move out of the Walton homestead; Jason decides to make more of his musical talent, while Jim-Bob asks the Baldwin sisters to help him expand his garage business. In New York, John-Boy is in a relationship with Jane Schuler (Melinda Naud), trying to help him deal with writer's block. Mary Ellen and Jonesy are tasked with fattening up a turkey for the big day. John Curtis continuously runs off to a spot in the woods to meet an invisible "friend," The family is surprised to find out who it is while looking through a family album.

[Note: This is Robert Wightman's last appearance as John-Boy.]
A Walton Thanksgiving ReunionHarry HarrisClaire Whitaker and Rod PetersonNovember 21, 1993 (1993-11-21)

In mid-November 1963, the Walton siblings and their families return to Walton's Mountain for the Thanksgiving holiday, including John-Boy and his new fiancé Janet. Several days later, they received the tragic news that President Kennedy had been assassinated in Dallas, Texas. Meanwhile, Erin and a fellow school employee are trying to get over their unfaithful spouses. John and Ben lock horns over their old run-down truck, Cindy tries to convince Ben to adopt a child, Corabeth refuses to have anything to do with Aimee after she marries a mechanic, and Toni is tired of Jason going away on concert tours.

[Notes: Richard Thomas returns to his role as John-Boy Walton for this and the two subsequent movies. Rachel Longaker returns as Aimee Godsey in her final appearance.]
A Walton WeddingRobert Ellis MillerClaire Whitaker and Rod PetersonFebruary 12, 1995 (1995-02-12)
John-Boy and Janet are about to be wed on Walton's Mountain, though Janet's overbearing Aunt Flo (Holland Taylor) has put herself in charge of planning the ceremony and may drive everyone crazy in the process. In the subplots, Olivia enrolls in an American Studies course at Boatwright. John is at odds with Ben and Drew over a deal Ben made with a nearby developer. Toni is expecting yet another child, Corabeth attempts to become a writer through a mail-order correspondence course, and Grandma becomes upset at John-Boy's article about her father.
A Walton EasterBill CorcoranJulie SayresApril 27, 1997 (1997-04-27)
It is 1969, and John and Olivia are looking forward to celebrating their 40th anniversary. John-Boy and Janet are about to have their first child, and the entire family and community are looking forward to Easter. Janet initially resists John-Boy's plan to maintain a home on the mountain for occasional visits but relents when she realizes how much the area means to him. In other subplots, Elizabeth, home from the Peace Corps, hears that Drew left her for another girl; John and Drew attempt to make a sale with a supply of rocking chairs Drew built, John receives a surprise from the Baldwin sisters. Now teaching at the old school, Olivia helps a new student build up encouragement in his education.

Retrospective (2010)

TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
A Walton's Family ReunionDoug ButtsLeeAnne Burnett Morse and Mary McDonoughOctober 18, 2010 (2010-10-18)
Surviving cast members and creator Earl Hamner reminisce about the series and their lives since its original run.


  1. ^ a b "Ratings info" (PDF). Retrieved 2020-06-29.
  2. ^ "TV Guide's Top 100 Episodes". Rev/Views. Retrieved July 4, 2016.
  3. ^ Curtis was played by Ned Beatty in season 1, The Bicycle.
  4. ^ Covington was played by David Huddleston in season 1, The Literary Man.
  5. ^ The Conflict, Season 3, Episode 1
  6. ^ John Furia, Jr.
  7. ^ "The Waltons s9-ep11 - The Hot Rod". Retrieved 26 August 2021.