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As ranch hand Mike brings in the mail at Gene Autry's ranch, one of Gene's men receives a dictograph, as first prize in a contest. In the mail, Gene receives a letter from Bradford Collins, chairman of the Brooks Land Corp. and decides to call a ranchers' meeting at the Bellweather Lodge to discuss their rent increases. On his way to the lodge, Gene stops to help Shelly Brooks change a flat tire, and Shelly explains that her brother, Waldo T. Brooks, Jr. owns the corporation. The ranchers visit lawyer Thaddeus Bellweather, but because he is leaving for the local lake, they are unable to consult with him. Later, board members Bradford Collins and William Schooler inform the bed-ridden Waldo that his company has a deficit of over a million dollars. After the board members leave, Waldo says he knows nothing of the rent increases, and decides to give Gene power of attorney, explaining that he also needs a vacation at the lake. Meanwhile, the board meets to discuss forcing Waldo out, and when Gene presents his power of attorney, they are obligated to admit him to the meeting. The board votes to contribute $50,000 each to keep the company running, and give Gene thirty days to raise his share of the money. At the house, Gene explains to Shelly that he will be forced to auction off their horses in order to raise some money. He collects $28,000, and decides to organize a rodeo to raise the rest. Meanwhile, a policeman arrests a pick-pocket named Dippy, but instead of pressing charges, Collins decides to hire Dippy. Later, Mr. Stimpson, an official from the child labor board, informs Gene that Waldo's young sister Robin will need her guardian's consent before she can participate in the rodeo. Robin is told that she cannot go, but stows away in one of the wagons traveling to the rodeo. That night, as Gene and his men make camp, the wagon in which Robin hides suddenly races out of control and crashes off a shallow cliff. Gene then dives in to the river below and rescues Robin from drowning. Later, at the rodeo, Dippy lifts Gene's wallet, and replaces his authentic power of attorney with a forged one that Collins has given him. The sheriff is informed of the forgery and, after he finds the paper in Gene's possession, arrests him, and charges him with Waldo's murder. Posing as Gene's mother, Shelly visits him in jail, where she ties the sheriff's wrists together with her knitting yarn. After she lets Gene out of jail, he travels to the lake where he finds Waldo and insists that he return so that he can clear Gene of the murder charge. Shelly returns to town to bring Collins and Schooler to the lake, telling them that Waldo is dead. They go to Waldo's cabin near the lake, where Waldo pretends to be dead. Gene and his men leave Collins and Schooler alone in the room, while they go outside to listen on the speaker they have wired up. While Gene records their conversation on the dictograph, the sheriff hears the men conspiring to take over Waldo's company and arrests them both. Back in town, Gene announces that Collins and Schooler have been taken to jail.