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U.S. Marshal Sunset Carson and his pal Lucky are assigned to investigate problems in Quartzville. There, at the Turner Express Co. depot, Sunset breaks up a fistfight between owner Bob Turner and a gunman named Hacker. After the local lawman advises Sunset to keep out of trouble if he wants to stay in Quartzville, Bob invites Sunset and Lucky to stay at his adoptive grandfather Andy Jeffers' ranch. Attorney John Martin informs Andy and Bob's sister Jane that many families have left town due to a smallpox scare. Andy, however, decides to remain on his ranch and Doc Alexander shows up to give him a vaccination. Sunset learns that Andy requested the presence of a marshal after his only relative and beneficiary, nephew Jimmy Campbell, disappeared. Unknown to Andy, Martin has conspired with Alexander, who is really a mining engineer, to create a false smallpox scare in order to take over Andy's ranch, where they have discovered a gold vein. That night, gunmen attack the ranch but Sunset captures two of them, Hacker and Rusty. The next day, while Lucky and Bob take the prisoners into town, Sunset follows Martin to his gang's hideout but is captured and tied to a tree. In town, the sheriff informs Lucky and Bob that he has quit and tells them to take their prisoners to the county seat twelve miles away. Sunset manages to escape and, after Martin and his men ambush Lucky and Bob in order to free Hacker and Rusty, saves his friends, who join him as he heads back to the gang's cabin. There they discover Jimmy, who tells them that Martin is holding a phony murder charge over his head and has forced him to sign over his inheritance to him. Meanwhile, Alexander visits Andy intending to kill him, while Martin and his men surround the ranch in order to trap Sunset when he returns. However, Sunset arrives just in time to stop Alexander from killing Andy, and a long gunfight ensues. After Martin surrenders, Sunset chases after Hacker and Rusty, capturing them both. Later, Sunset appoints Bob as the temporary lawman and the prisoners leave for jail. Sunset and Lucky then bid farewell and head off to a new assignment.