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In 1870 California, at the hacienda of Señora Moreno, everyone prepares for a fiesta and the arrival of Father Salvierderra, who will celebrate Mass for the ranch inhabitants and the Indians who are making their yearly appearance to shear the sheep. The Señora welcomes her handsome son Felipe and sends him to find Ramona, the Señora's lovely ward, who has gone to meet Salvierderra. After they all arrive back at the hacienda, Felipe also welcomes Alessandro, the Indian leader. That night, at the fiesta, Felipe tells Ramona how beautiful she is, and while Ramona feels a sisterly affection for him, it is obvious that she does not share his passion. Alessandro sees her dancing and finds out who she is, while elsewhere, the Señora complains to Salvierderra about Felipe's interest in Ramona. The next morning, as everyone goes to Mass, Ramona, charmed by Alessandro's singing, questions Felipe about him. That afternoon, Felipe falls from his horse and is seriously injured during a race with Alessandro. Weeks later, after Felipe's recovery, Alessandro is about to leave when Ramona declares her love for him, and he asks her to marry him. The Señora, alerted by the jealous servant Margarita, who loves Alessandro herself, sends Alessandro away, and tells Ramona that she will have to go to a convent. The Señora then informs Ramona that her mother was an Indian, and her father a former suitor of the Señora's sister, who adopted Ramona as a baby and then appointed the Señora her guardian when she herself died. Ramona is pleased by the scandalous news, and feels that, as an Indian, she belongs with Alessandro. Later that night, Felipe helps her sneak out of her room and meet Alesssandro. The lovers are married and, years later, have a baby girl and a prosperous farm until white settlers are given title to the Indian lands by the government. A bitter Alessandro packs up his family and they are forced by a rainstorm to stop at the cabin of kindly Aunt Ri, whose distrust of Indians is put aside upon finding out that they are Christians. They are still there two days later, unable to leave due to the baby's fever. Alessandro rides to town for Dr. Weaver, who cannot leave because many others are also ill. On the way back, his horse becomes lame, so Alessandro goes to Jim Farrar's house, where he takes a horse after not finding Farrar, who returns in time to see Alessandro leaving. When Alessandro reaches home, he comforts Ramona with a lie that the doctor will come soon. Farrar arrives, and Ramona mistakes him for the doctor as he goes to find Alessandro, whom he shoots on sight. After Alessandro's funeral, Aunt Ri tells Ramona to be grateful for the baby, and as they walk to the cabin, Ramona sees Felipe, who has come to help her. Ramona holds her baby and smiles through her tears, glad that she has some part of Alessandro still with her.