The Marshal of Mesa City

The Marshal of Mesa City is a 1939 American western film directed by David Howard from a screenplay by Jack Lait Jr..

The Marshal of Mesa City
Directed byDavid Howard
Eddie Donahue (assistant)
Produced byBert Gilroy
Screenplay byJack Lait Jr.
StarringGeorge O'Brien
Virginia Vale
Music byPaul Sawtell
CinematographyHarry Wild
Edited byFrederic Knudtson
Release date
  • November 3, 1939 (1939-11-03)[1]
Running time
62 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$180,000[2]

Although no story credit was given, this film bears a striking similarity to the 1935 western, The Arizonian, whose screenplay and story were written by Academy Award winner Dudley Nichols, and some sources state that this film was a remake of the earlier picture. Both were produced and distributed by RKO Radio Pictures, and The Marshal of Mesa City was released on November 3, 1939. The film stars George O'Brien and Virginia Vale.


Because the corrupt sheriff, Jud Cronin, won't leave her alone, schoolteacher Virginia King decides to leave Mesa City for good. Cronin's cronies intercept her stagecoach, but a passenger, retired lawman Cliff Mason, foils their plans.

Virginia must accompany Cliff back to town because the stagecoach is damaged. There they discover a marshal has been murdered by Cronin's hired gun Pete Henderson, who gets away with the crime in court. Cliff is offered the marshal's badge and Duke Allison rides to town to become his deputy. In a shootout, Cronin is killed by Duke, who also perishes. Cliff and Virginia leave town together.



  1. "The Marshal of Mesa City: Detail View". American Film Institute. Archived from the original on April 2, 2014. Retrieved September 16, 2014.
  2. Richard Jewel, 'RKO Film Grosses: 1931-1951', Historical Journal of Film Radio and Television, Vol 14 No 1, 1994 p55

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