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How the West Was Won is a 1962 Western about the struggles early settlers faced when crossing over to the frontier west. It is composed of five different phases, each describing different events. The movie centers on one family, the Prescotts, and follows them throughout the film for four generations. The family begins their journey by escaping from river pirates and running into fur trapper Linus Rawlings (played by James Stewart), who joins them on their trip and falls in love with their daughter, Eve.

After the group rafts down a river, the rapids overturn their raft, and the Prescott parents perish. Linus then marries Eve, and they decide to live near the same river where Eve’s parents drowned.

Eve’s sister Lilith then travels to St. Louis to perform as a dancer. A professional gambler by the name of Cleve Van Valen (Gregory Peck) finds out that Lilith has just inherited a California gold mine, and he, wagonmaster Roger Morgan, and Lilith’s new friend Agatha Clegg accompany Lilith to California.

The group arrives in California after surviving an attack by the Cheyenne Indians, and to Lilith’s dismay, there is nothing to the gold mine anymore. Lilith then takes off and lives in a covered wagon, working in a dance hall. Morgan locates her some time later, and the two get married.

Meanwhile, Eve and Linus have now raised a son called Zeb. Linus and Zeb both enlist in the Civil War, where Linus dies in the Battle of Shiloh. The war ends, and Zeb returns home to his mother, but she has passed on from heartbreak. Zeb leaves his parents’ home to look for a better life.

Zeb eventually makes a family, and they meet with Lilith in Arizona at the train station. After surviving a shootout with his enemies, Zeb’s family and Lilith travel to California to live in the West.

How the West Was Won is an Western movie that was released in 1962 and has a run time of 2 hr 42 min. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.1 and a MetaScore of 56.

Where do I stream How the West Was Won online? How the West Was Won is available to watch and stream, download, buy on demand at HBO Max, Sling, Google Play, YouTube VOD online. Some platforms allow you to rent How the West Was Won for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.

| 1962 | 2 hr 42 min | 7.1/10 | 56/100
Carroll Baker, Lee J. Cobb, Henry Fonda, Carolyn Jones
John Ford, Henry Hathaway, George Marshall, Richard Thorpe (uncredited)
Produced By
Bernard Smith

Also starring Carroll Baker

Also starring Lee J. Cobb