September 12, 1959 The American western/cowboy television series Bonanza was aired on the NBC television network until January 16, 1973. David Dortort was the writer and the producer of first pilot episode of the series. He the creator of tv series like The Restless Gun, The High Chaparral, The Cowboys, and the Bonanza prequel, Ponderosa. Bonanza was the first hour-long network television series filmed in color. For the 430 episode the series, the main sponsor was Chevrolet and the stars occasionally appeared in commercials endorsing Chevrolet automobiles. All the cast and members had appeared in numerous stage, television and film productions.
The series was aired on Saturday evenings on 1959, most typically a social night. It was soon targeted for cancellation, but given one last chance. A move to Sunday nights at 9:00 PM, caused the series to soar, and it remained high on the Nielsen ratings until Autumn 1972.Sunday time-slot was crucial to the success of the show: the show was #1 from 1964 through 1967, in the yearly Nielsen ratings. The series was moved to Tuesday nights during its 14th and final season. In terms of old age, the show remains the second longest-running series of NBC's, after Law & Order.
Bonanza got its name from the Comstock Lode which was "an exceptionally large and rich mineral deposit" of silver. Virginia City was founded directly over the lode and was mined for 19 years. Ponderosa was an alternative title of the series, often used for the broadcast of syndicated reruns in the 1970s and 1980s.
Bonanza was brought back for three made-for-TV movies featuring the Cartwrights' offspring. Also include Bonanza The Next Generation 1988, Bonanza: The Return 1993 and Bonanza: Under Attack 1995. Michael Landon, Jr., who bore no resemblance to his father, played Little Joe's sons while Dirk Blocker, who looks and sounds exactly like his father, briefly portrayed an unrelated newspaper reporter in a small role, although clips of his appearance was heavily used in the advertisements before the film's broadcast.