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The Lady from Cheyenne

The Lady from Cheyenne(1941)

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During a public land auction held in the township of Laraville, Wyoming by the Union Pacific Railroad, crooked land baron Jim Cork is told by his henchmen that he will have no problem buying the land he wants, as only settlers and speculators are present for the sale. As additional insurance, Steve Lewis, Cork's lawyer, is running the auction, and plans to suffer from selected deafness, accepting bids on the choice lots only from Jim's henchmen. Philadelphian Quaker schoolteacher Annie Morgan, however, spoils Cork's plans by buying one of the lots through an act of chivalry by Steve. After the auction, the town of Laraville quickly goes up, with Annie building a schoolhouse and Cork a saloon. When rival Turk tries to build another saloon, Cork frames him for murder. Steve then courts Annie in an attempt to persuade her to sell her land. The lawyer asks Annie to a square dance, and she innocently asks him to kiss her after a waltz. Steve's scheme is about to work until newspaper editor Hank Foreman tells the naïve Annie about Cork's water conspiracy, the success of which hinges on the purchase of Annie's land. After the land sale is canceled, Cork's men burn down Annie's schoolhouse and rough up Hank. Annie and the other settlers have a town meeting, and when the men refuse to stand up to Cork, Annie and the women decide to take matters into their own hands. When Cork is informed that the women plan to try him with a female jury, Steve proclaims that they cannot serve on a jury, as they are disenfranchised. Annie then goes to Cheyenne, the state capital, to introduce a bill on women's suffrage. She is accompanied on the train to Cheyenne by Steve, who has just been elected to the legislature. In the capital, Annie stays in a cheap hotel, where she meets prostitute Elsie. When Annie tries to address the state legislature, Steve helps pass a resolution barring women from the proceedings. Elsie then convinces Jerry Stover, one of her legislative "friends," to introduce Annie's bill. Steve has the bill referred to the judiciary committee, with himself as chairman. Later, legislative attendant George advises Annie to see the governor if she wants to get her bill out of Steve's committee, and steals an invitation to the governor's ball for her. Dressed in Elsie's and her chorus girl friends's best clothes, Annie charms the governor at the ball, but he tells her that he can be of little help, as she must "lobby" the legislature itself. With George's help, Annie plays the Democrats against the Republicans and tricks both parties into agreeing to vote for the bill. At the end of the ball, Steve confesses his love to Annie, but she rejects him, showing him a telegram stating that a settler named John Clark was killed by Cork. At the meeting of the legislature the next morning, Annie shows up with Elsie and her friendly "lobbyists." The bill is voted on by secret ballot and passes unanimously. Back in Laraville, Steve quits Cork's gang because of Clark's murder. Along with a contingent of reporters and special prosecutor Fitzpatrick, Annie heads by train back to Laraville. Before she arrives in town, however, Cork's gang stops the train and takes her into "protective custody." Steve and the townspeople ride to Annie's rescue, and Steve is wounded in the ensuing shootout. Cork is arrested and tried by the female jury, which finds him guilty of murder. Annie then rushes to the train station to stop Steve from leaving town and proclaims her love, offering to quit politics and marry him.