powered by AFI
In the town of Eagle Pass, Sheriff Malcolm is reluctant to evict Tim Clark from his family land, the Bar X Ranch, even though land baron Robert Russell appears to be the legal owner. After paying his ranch hands, Artie and Duke, with the last of his savings, Tim goes prospecting for silver in a nearby range, hoping to someday reclaim his family ranch, which has been lost through excessive borrowing. After leaving his new colt with his neighbor's daughter, Betty Owen, whom he loves, Tim rides up to Russell and calls him a cow thief. Tim mines for many hot, discouraging days, but does not receive any of Betty's letters. Two years pass, and Betty, whose father has since died, is about to be forced into marriage to Russell. Just as Russell tells Betty that Tim has become an outlaw, Tim, bleeding from a gunshot wound he received from Russell's henchman, Jiggs Tyler, rides up and orders Russell away. The next day, Tim rides into town to obtain the $10,000 Betty needs to pay Russell to prevent him from taking over the Bridle Bit. That night, the Wells Fargo express office is robbed and its agent killed. At Russell's prompting, a posse rides after Tim, who insists that he was at the express office to wire a friend for money. Realizing that he is being framed for the robbery and murder, Tim escapes at gunpoint. Russell, meanwhile, demands the immediate foreclosure on the Bridle Bit, but Tim returns with the $10,000, keeping the property in Betty's possession. Tim is arrested again, but Betty bails him out of jail by putting up her dry river bed as security. Later, at the local saloon, Russell tells his ally, Zink Yocum, that Tim must be killed. At the Wells Fargo office, Tim finds a clue that was overlooked, a piece of paper bearing the imprint of Yocum's metal heel. Yocum tries to flee but is shot by Tim. Desperate to get Tim out of his way, Russell plots with Bendix, the sheriff's treacherous deputy, to place Tim in a position where he can be shot for resisting arrest. Tim, meanwhile, tells the sheriff that he has found gold while prospecting, and the sheriff tells him that he must register his claim in Gold City before he answers questions about his whereabouts during the Wells Fargo robbery. Tim is suspicious when Bendix tries to arrest him minutes later, then outdraws both Bendix and Russell when they attempt their ambush. After Russell shoots Bendix and Tim kills Russell, the dying Bendix confesses that Russell robbed the express and that the Bar X ranch was taken illegally. Designated the rightful owner of the Bar X Ranch, Tim and Betty plan their wedding.