The team investigates the 1958 murder of a newlywed Ivy League graduate who spearheaded the lucrative concept of developing suburban communities with affordable housing outside of Philadelphia. Meanwhile, Lilly makes time to dine with her father.
Rush and the team reopen the case of the 1958 murder of a talented and up-and-coming real estate mogul, Julian Bellowes. Julian was a Wharton graduate who managed, in their first meeting, to impress the owner of one of the most successful construction companies in Philadelphia, Harrison Kemp. Julian convinced Kemp to take acres of desolate corn and potato fields and make them into thousands of affordable homes for blue-collar working families; Julian called it Libertyville.
He also fell in love with and married Kemp's daughter, Caroline, which secured his place in the prominent family as well as the company; which Caroline’s brother Harry was in no way happy with. Julian was a good man who kept a dark secret that he increasingly feared would get out and destroy not only his career but his marriage; he was an African-American man who had been posing as a Caucasian man since he left the armed services.
He planned to free himself of the secret and do right by his family and community and integrate Libertyville at a time when integration was a taboo subject. Before he could come clean and spearhead his suburban dream he was murdered. In the weeks before his murder, several people from his past returned to his life and one decided that Julian took the easy way out and had to finally pay for abandoning his identity and his people in order, as the killer saw it, to further his own professional goals without having to endure the trials of most of the African-American community at that time.
- Kathryn Morris as Lilly Rush
- Danny Pino as Scotty Valens
- John Finn as John Stillman
- Jeremy Ratchford as Nick Vera
- Thom Barry as Will Jeffries
- Tracie Thoms as Kat Miller
- Johnathon Schaech as Julian Bellowes
- Ken Howard as Harrison Kemp
- John Aprea as Paul Romano (2009)
- Richard Gant as George Watson (2009)
- Alexandra Holden as Caroline Bellowes (1958)
- Brian Hooks as George Watson (1949, 1958)
- Sam Littlefield as Harry Kemp Jr. (1958)
- Constance Towers as Caroline Bellowes (2009)
- Hattie Winston as Regina Reynolds (2009)
- Erica Ash as Regina Reynolds (1958)
- Phoebe Dorin as Joan Rasky (2009)
- Ron Gilbert as Angelo Romano (1958)
- Lynn Hamilton as Mary Chisolm (2009)
- David Arrigotti as Paul Romano (1958)
- Makenna Barrett as Lilly Rush (1976)
- Brant Cotton as Paul Cooper (1976)
- Deborah Geffner as Joy Bellowes (2009)
- Lukus Grace as Casey Hollenbeck (1958)
- Zach McGowan as Corporal Clerk (1949)
- Claire Titelman as Joan Rasky (1958)
- Unknown actress as Mary Chisolm (1958)
- This episode was Harve Presnell's final on-screen appearance.
- While the music used on Cold Case is normally from or around the years that the cases originate, the Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings cover of "This Land Is Your Land" is very recent, from their 2005 album, Naturally.
- Tony Bennett "Are You Havin' Any Fun?"
- Dean Martin "It Looks Like Love"
- Frank Sinatra "Oh! Look At Me Now!"
- Closing Song: Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings "This Land Is Your Land"