Set in 1859, this western drama followed the men of the Cartwright family and their ranch off the mountainous shores of Lake Tahoe called the Ponderosa. White-haired patriarch Ben Cartwright (Lorne Greene) has three sons from his three widows; Adam (Pernell Roberts), an urbane architect who built the ranch; Eric "Hoss" (Dan Blocker) the warm and lovable giant; and "Little Joe" (Michael Landon), the youngest and most hotheaded. Together they lived on the half a million-acre farm located near Virginia City, Nev. during and after the American Civil War. While most of the episodes had a Western theme, "Bonanza" covered a number of modern issues like racism, bigotry, domestic violence and anti-war sentiments.
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