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After he is found exhuming a corpse while in search of his murdered brother, Texas Ranger Shadrach Jones is interrogated by gun-wielding cowboy Rod Main. Rod tells him that the body of an unidentified man was recently found near hotel in town. Jones then draws his gun and, after identifying himself as a policeman, disarms Rod. At the stable where his brother kept his horse, Jones asks Indian Joe and groom Gonzales what time his brother came to retrieve his horse on the night he was killed, but Gonzales explains that the horse had been taken while he slept. Later, at the hotel, Jones learns from cowboy Mike Shattay that the Circle "K" Ranch is preparing to drive some cattle to the Blackfoot reservation in Montana. Suspecting that the killer is a member of the Circle "K" trail team, Jones asks him if he knows who killed his brother, but Mike walks away without answering. Inside the hotel office, Jones finds the register book with his brother's signature partially erased. When Jones questions an employee named Adelaide Gilbert, she claims that his brother reserved a room, but left shortly thereafter without paying. Jones becomes furious and rips the page out of the register, but when Adelaide draws her gun, he gives it back to her. Jones is given a room at the hotel and notices the foreman of the Circle "K" Ranch, "Big Mart" Stores, lurking on the adjacent balcony. As Mart draws his gun on him, Jones kills him, revealing afterward that Mart was wanted for murder in Fort Worth. Jones then replaces Mart as foreman of the ranch, and the cattle drive begins. Later, Adelaide admits to Jones that after she found his brother murdered in his room, she asked Gonzales and Indian Joe to dump the body in the arroyo. At the Rangers' headquarters, Capt. MacKellar begs Jones to give up his quest for revenge against his brother's killer, but Jones is adamant. Later, as Jones and Rod are preparing to duel, Rod is shot in the back by someone else. Later, in her tent, Adelaide asks Mike if he is the killer. The following day, Jones resumes the drive and works the ranch hands unmercifully. After one of them becomes ill and dies, the others are forced to bury him along the way. Mournfully, the ranch hands continue the drive until they come to a river. When Jones orders the ranch hands to disrobe and cross, Mike hesitates, so he rips off his boot to reveal an ungainly leg brace. Jones immediately regrets his behavior, seeing that he has humiliated Mike in front of the others. Later, he tells MacKellar that he has lost his desire to seek revenge for his brother's death. When MacKellar sees a wounded calf nearby, he kills it to spare it suffering. A short time later, after he confesses to killing Jones's brother, MacKellar is gored by a bull and begs Jones to offer him the same consideration. Jones, however, decides to let him suffer, offering him only liquor to ease his pain.