Most of the romance stories featured on The Young Riders were "first loves."  However, this was not the case for Sam and Emma, whose relationship gave both of them a second chance at love.   Both had been married before, and suffered heart breaks from their marriages: Sam, from the death of his wife, and Emma, from her husband walking out on her.

   Emma was the first station mistress at the Pony Express station in Sweetwater.  The station was actually on Emma's property and she continued to allow the use of the property after her departure.  She first arrived in Sweetwater with her husband, Evan Krandall. They were very happy at first; they built the house and had a baby.  Tragedy struck and both Emma and the baby suffered from smallpox, which led to the death of the baby. After that, Evan began drinking and staying out late, until one night he never came back.

  In the episode "Unfinished Business",  Evan shows back up in Sweetwater which causes lots of conflict in Sam and Emma's relationship.  Emma feels obligated to take Evan in, while Sam believes Evan is up to something.  It turns out that Sam is correct and Evan ends up getting killed by a gang of muderous theives he stole from.
     Besides her marriage to Evan Krandall, little else is known about Emma's past, although it was hinted to have been colorful. In "Gunfighter", it was revealed that she was once involved with the gunfighter Longley and that her father did not approve of him. Emma also has admitted to doing things she is not proud of and that Evan Krandall saved her from herself.

    Sam had been the marshal of Sweetwater for three years before the beginning of the show. Sam's past is as equally interesting as Emma's.  Sam's wife of three months, Jennifer, was murdered and Sam began to hunt down the men responsible. It was implied that Sam lived the life of an outlaw during the period of time spent avenging Jennifer's death.
     After tracking down and killing all of the men responsible, except for the leader Van Dorn, Sam lost the stomach for gunfighting. However, in "Man Behind the Badge," Van Dorn arrives in Sweetwater with a new Marshal to replace Sam and then attempts to frame Sam for murder. Of course, Teaspoon, Emma, and the riders come through to save the day, Sam is aquitted and reinstated as Marshal.

  Sam and Emma's courtship began before the beginning of the series. In the early episodes of first season, the courtship mostly consisted of a lot of mutual flirting. However, by "Ft. Reunion," it is clear that the two had become regular love birds, although it was not very clear when it happened.  Unfortunatly, the viewers never had a chance to really experience their love grow, it just happened.  Furthermore, "Unfinshed Business" and "The Mad Behind the Badge" were the only two episodes that had any focus on their relationship. As badly as the steps of the romance were written, the couple was written out.
   In the second season opener, "Born to Hang," it is stated that Sam and Emma were married, Sam was promoted to head territorial Marshal, and they moved away (to Ft. Laramie?).  Although fans were very happy for the marriage, we were very upset to have "missed" the wedding and see the couple leave the show.

Special thanks go to Marion and Sandra for donating the wonderful screen captures featured on this page. Links to their sites can be found on our Links Page. Thank you ladies!

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