Show Type: Detective Drama

First Telecast: January 28, 1973

Last Telecast: September 4, 1980

Executive Producer: Quinn Martin

Broadcast History:

January 1973-June 1974, Sunday 9:30-10:30 on CBS

July 1974-September 1974, Saturday 10:00-11:00 on CBS

September 1974-August 1975, Tuesday 10:00-11:00 on CBS

September 1975-November 1975, Friday 10:00-11:00 on CBS

December 1975-November 1979, Thursday 10:00-11:00 on CBS

December 1979-September 1980, Thursday 9:00-10:00 on CBS


Barnaby Jones..... Buddy Ebsen

Betty Jones..... Lee Meriwether

Jedediah "J.R." Romano Jones (1976-1980)..... Mark Shera

Lieutenant Joe Taylor (1973)..... Vince Howard

Lieutenant John Biddle (1974-1980)..... John Carter


After a long successful career as a Private Investigator, Barnaby Jones had retired, leaving the business to his son, Hal. When Hal was murdered while on a case, Barnaby came out of retirement to help track down his son's killer. Hal's widow, Betty, worked with her father-in-law to solve the case and remained with him, as his assistant, when he decided to keep his Los Angeles-based firm in operation.

His keen analytical skills were often masked by a homespun exterior, drawing guilty parties into a false sense of security that led to their downfall. Until Cannon - another Los Angeles detective series - went off the air in the fall of 1975, there was occasional interplay between it and Barnaby Jones.

In the fall of 1976, Barnaby's young cousin, J.R. joined the firm, initially to track down the murderer of his father, but eventually as a permanent partner. One of the things that most fascinated him was Barnaby's home crime laboratory, something rarely seen in other detective series. It was in the lab that various clues were analyzed and possible bits of evidence evaluated. J.R., in addition to his work with Barnaby, was also studying to pass the bar exam and become a lawyer.