Silver River (American Mining Themed Movie – 1948)

 

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Silver River is a 1948 western film directed by Raoul Walsh and starring Errol Flynn and Ann Sheridan. The film is based on a Stephen Longstreet novel.

During the American Civil War, soldier Mike McComb is cashiered from the army when he disobeys orders in order to prevent the Confederates from stealing the one million dollars he is guarding by burning the money. After being publicly humiliated by the townspeople, he and his friend ‘Pistol’ Porter confiscate gambling equipment and set out to Silver City, Nevada to open a saloon and gambling hall. On his way to St. Joseph, Mike meets Georgia Moore, a beautiful but serious woman that runs the Silver River mine with her husband Stanley and is currently hiring all the available wagons.

McComb wins ownership of the wagons in a poker game, much to Georgia’s anger. Although he allows her to travel with him, she is unamused with McComb’s playful behavior and soon abandons him. Once in Silver City, McComb, in a short time, builds the most successful saloon of the area. He hires John Plato Beck as his lawyer, an alcoholic but good-hearted man. Meanwhile, Georgia is worried when she finds out Stanley has bought back his wagons from McComb in exchange for 6,000 shares in the mine.

This is only worsened when it turns out that Stanley does not have the money to finish his smelter and has to go to McComb for finances. Mike agrees to finance him, in exchange for a third interest in the mine. Furthermore, McComb announces to open a town bank, in which the townspeople can accept to pay vouchers in lieu of cash.

Despite having become one of the most rich and successful men in area, his bank empire even receiving a visit from the President of the United States, Ulysses S. Grant, McComb is unable to charm Georgia. Encouraged by the President, McComb plans on extending his empire up to and including Black Rock Range. Although he is aware of the dangerous Shoshone Indians in that area, he assigns Stanley to realize his plans. When Plato makes him feel guilty, McComb warns Georgia about the danger her husband is in, but it turns out that they are too late: Stanley has been killed by the Indians.

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