Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

It has been almost 60 years since The Rifleman first visited our living rooms. Grab your boots and saddle and get ready to ride as we revisit the McCain's! Lucas, Mark & Micah gather here to talk about The Rifleman. What better place to discuss The Rifleman then his own front porch.
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wildwest
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Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:51 pm

UglyBug:34430 wrote:I'm hoping someone can answer this!  It seems to me Lucas killed an awful lot of bad guys when he wasn't deputized. (Doesn't deputizing disqualify someone from rewards?)  Most of them were wanted men, and the posters do usually say "dead or alive."  Wouldn't he have collected a fortune in ransoms?  Do you suppose he simply didn't apply for the money?  Is this ever explained or mentioned in the show?  (I still haven't seen them all yet.)

I apologize in advance if this has already been discussed.  I did try the search engine first this time!
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:51 pm

markisddg:34438 wrote:Hey that's a great question. I don't think anyone has brought that subject up yet.

I know in one episode Lucas is due some reward and wants to have it sent to the dead guy's son who is back east in school. Could that be The Wrong Man?

The only time Lucas is holding onto a lot of money is in Outlaw's Inheritance when he gets the $500 but that's not reward money.

I would say Lucas should have gotten a lot of money for killing wanted men.

He was deputized so often and always said Micah was out of town doing some official work.

In Blowout that guy Al Walker is wanted and dies with Lucas...wonder if Lucas got the reward he wasn't deputized in that one the timid guy who hid in the marshal's office was deputized, Ben Waller.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:51 pm

BluewindFarm:34442 wrote:When I read the title to the post I thought, well... bullets cost a LOT of money and he certainly went through a lot!

But then I read the substance of your post and was, yeah, he did kill a lot of wanted men, where were the rewards?  Guess he needed to find a good financial planner to make sure he got what he was entitled to.  Or else he knew he'd end up paying taxes on it so he never bothered to file a claim on the rewards.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:52 pm

winterhawk:34446 wrote:Maybe Lucas was putting the money back for Mark's college fund.  Would of loved to seen Mark in college back East, maybe Harvard.  He would of been a good Lawyer.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:52 pm

UglyBug:34447 wrote:Bluewindfarm, you literally have me laughing out loud with the cost of bullets idea!  And, it does seem like Lucas was always getting replacement parts for the rifle as well.  He also had to replace all the stuff he shot up, like the wooden balls on the hotel sign, and the chair he shot up on his own porch to show his skills.

You now have me also wondering when Americans started paying income tax.  (It's getting to be ridiculous how often I google stuff from The Rifleman.  A couple of days ago I even looked up when pencils were invented.)

It was Outlaw's Inheritance, markisdgg, that gave me the idea that Lucas might refuse any rewards.  It seemed like he wasn't going to take the inheritance when he couldn't remember meeting the Outlaw.  It wasn't ever clear whether he kept the money at the end.

Hmm, if Mark had a college fund, it must have been started after A Friend in Need, or Lucas wouldn't have sold the ranch for the ransom...

I also wonder what bad guy had the biggest reward that Lucas qualified for.  In my relatively limited experience, I would guess the Skull Ranch gang leader.  What do you think?
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
(Lucas in Home Ranch) :gunfightercowboy:

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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:53 pm

rooster davis:34452 wrote:
You now have me also wondering when Americans started paying income tax.  (It's getting to be ridiculous how often I google stuff from The Rifleman.  A couple of days ago I even looked up when pencils were invented.)
I think there were a couple of times in the very distant past where an income tax was enacted, to pay for wars, but you can bet it was nothing like what we have today with a huge government structure to yank money out of peoples' paychecks etc. Actually I think it was not until around WW2 that the income tax became a permanent fixture.

In 1950 an electrician could make $120 a week. (That is $1100 in today's money.) After taxes he took home $112. The $8 in taxes he paid then was about $73 today. One wage earner could support a wife and two or three children, own a house, buy a car, take a vacation in summer, and live very decently. Aaargh, don't get me started, it'll just depress me.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:53 pm

UglyBug:34454 wrote:Hey, rooster davis!  Nice to meet you.  

Thanks for saving me the google search.

I only recently learned to add two zeros to any dollar amount from around 1900 or before, to adjust for inflation.  I don't hold TV westerns to realistic dollar amounts, though.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
(Lucas in Home Ranch) :gunfightercowboy:

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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:54 pm

markisddg:34456 wrote:Hey if Colly from The Hero could collect his reward for killing the Domino Kid then Lucas should be reimbursed for all the guys he killed.

Lee Coyle? did he die? he was wanted.

Brud Evans

Ben Vargus from First Wages

Brett Stocker

Johnny Cotton

Wonder if the old man got any of the bounty money on that guy Coleman from Tension. After all his son actually killed him.

He could have gotten the money for Billy St. John after all he died in his yard in the Prodigal.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
(Lucas in Home Ranch) :gunfightercowboy:

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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:54 pm

TVFan:34457 wrote:It seems like he was always having the reward money go to someone else and not keep it.  I wonder about in The Trade when he was supposed to keep part of the reward money for turning Sam in.  I don't think they mentioned anything about it at the end.

Hey, not only were bullets expensive, but someone had to pay to have all those guys he killed buried.  I imagine North Fork had a fund set aside to pay for burial expenses, and maybe they would deposit the reward money in it.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
(Lucas in Home Ranch) :gunfightercowboy:

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Re: Why wasn't Lucas McCain wealthy?

Post by wildwest » Fri May 12, 2017 3:54 pm

UglyBug:34459 wrote:Good point, TVFan.  With all the guys Lucas killed, North Folk probably had to buy land for a special cemetery just for his burials.  That's gotta be included, too.  Coffins, markers, land, etc.  It all adds up.
:cowgirl: "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and He shall stand beside me later on."
(Lucas in Home Ranch) :gunfightercowboy:

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