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Virginia City

Virginia City(1940)

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Toward the end of the Civil War, a nearly defeated South is in desperate need of gold to continue the fight. Hoping to help the Confederacy, Julia Hayne travels from Virginia City to Libby prison, called the "black hole of the Confederacy," with a proposal to make to the prison's commander, Vance Irby. Julia tells Vance that a group of sympathizers has raised $5,000,000 for the Confederacy, and asks his help to bring it out of Virginia City. With the consent of Jefferson Davis, Vance agrees, but before Vance can leave for Nevada, Kerry Bradford, a Union intelligence officer and prisoner at Libby, escapes and hears rumors of the shipment. With his friends, Marblehead and Olaf "Moose" Swenson, Kerry is dispatched to stop the shipment, and on the stagecoach bound for Virginia City, he meets Julia. The two fall in love, but once they reach Virginia City, Julia avoids Kerry, while Vance readies the gold shipment under the guise of an immigrant wagon train headed for California. When the two antagonists meet again, Kerry realizes that Vance has been sent to escort the bullion South. As Kerry closes in on the gold, Vance asks Julia to lure him into a trap, forcing her to choose between her love and her country. Julia chooses her country, and the gold train leaves town with Kerry as their prisoner. Along the trail, Kerry escapes and, left for dead after a fall from a cliff, he wires the Union forces for help. Meanwhile, plagued by a lack of water, the train continues on until the bandit John Murrell and his men attack, just when things look their bleakest. Kerry and his men ride to the rescue, but they are no match for Murrell's band, and Vance, mortally wounded, asks Kerry to see that the gold is used to rebuild the South. Kerry promises to do so and buries the gold in an explosion. In the morning, Murrell's men move in for the slaughter, however, Union reinforcements arrive just in time to save the train. When Kerry refuses to turn over the gold, he is court martialled and sentenced to die, but at the last moment Julia wins a pardon from President Abraham Lincoln and the lovers, like the country, are reunited.