Cast & Crew
On the plains of the new State of Texas, drifter Cruze encounters gambler and cardsharp Fairweather, and together they ride on to the next town, Marlpine. In front of a Marlpine saloon, cattle rustler Tray Moran accuses Fairweather of cheating him in an El Paso card game. However, Cruze comes to Fairweather's defense in a fistfight with Moran and his two brothers, Gad and Hort. After Cruze bests all three, Tray swears revenge. Impressed by Cruze's actions, the town's mayor, Booth, approaches Cruze and offers him the job of marshal. Although Cruze tells Booth that he had been a marshal but turned in his badge because the town would not support him, he eventually accepts the offer. In his new role, Cruze warns Fairweather not to run any crooked card games. Later, after the Moran brothers rustle several herds of cattle and put their brand on them, the ranchers demand action from Cruze. While investigating, Cruze visits the ranch run by Charlotte Downing and her brother Cass and discovers that Tray is also there. Cruze asks to examine the Downing's herd, but they tell him to get a warrant. Cass later confesses to Charlotte that he has become involved in the Morans' rustling activities and has allowed them to conceal the cattle on the Downing ranch because Tray loaned him three thousand dollars when they were defaulting on payments on the ranch. Charlotte insists that Cass extricate them from this situation, then goes to tell Cruze about her brother's involvement and Tray's intention to kill him. Meanwhile, Tray has sent Gad and two gunmen to ambush Cruze, but he kills the gunmen while Gad escapes. After Mayor Booth refuses to lend Cass the three thousand dollars he needs, Cass joins one of Fairweather's card games. When the Morans enter the saloon, Cass tells them that their deal is over and that he will repay them. Tray then suggests a new deal to Cass: He will put up the three thousand dollars Cass owes and, if he loses a hand of poker, will ignore the debt, but if Tray wins he will take over the Downing ranch. Fairweather deals and Cass wins, but states that he will still repay the debt. Suddenly, Cass is shot and killed by someone using Fairweather's gun and firing from behind a curtain. When Cruze comes to investigate, the Morans say that Fairweather shot Cass and, due to a lack of other reliable witnesses, Cruze is forced to arrest him. Cruze goes out to the Downing ranch to give the money Cass won to Charlotte and ask her to testify against the Morans. Tray, who is nearby, draws a gun, then he and Cruze become involved in a fistfight, ending when Cruze arrests him for grand larceny. On the way back to town, Hort and Gad ambush them, allowing Tray to escape and wounding Cruze in the shoulder. Two of Charlotte's Mexican ranchhands help Cruze back to the ranch where Charlotte bandages him. She agrees to tell the mayor that many of the cattle on her ranch are stolen and that she saw the Morans changing brands. Meanwhile, the Morans decide to remove Fairweather from jail so that Cruze will go after him and they will have another opportunity to ambush him. The Morans order Cruze's deputy to hand over the key to the cell then kill him, making it appear that Fairweather did it. After Cruze returns and asks for a posse of eight men to go after the Morans, there are no volunteers, and Cruze accuses the town of letting him down. Although Mayor Booth, suspecting that Cruze is attempting to shield his friend, asks for his badge, Cruze refuses to hand it over. Cruze rides out alone and finds Charlie, the saloon's bartender and a Moran cohort, returning from their hideout. Cruze handcuffs Charlie to a tree, puts on his hat and jacket, then heads to the hideout. Hort, who is on lookout, thinks Charlie is returning and is captured by Cruze, who also traps Tray and Gad. However, when Cruze asks Fairweather to remove their guns, Tray grabs Fairweather and uses him as a shield. When Gad attempts to shoot Cruze, Hort protests that he might be hit, but Tray is willing to sacrifice his brother. Gad takes his shot and Cruze moves Hort into the line of fire and shoots Gad. Fairweather knocks the gun out of Tray's hand, but Tray then charges at Cruze with a knife. They struggle for possession of the knife but Cruze overpowers him. Later, Charlotte and her ranchhands ride up as Cruze and Fairweather take the survivors, Tray and Charlie, into town. Fairweather then lays odds that Cruze and Charlotte will have a long relationship.
L. L. Foreman
This film's working title was Adios, My Texas. World Films, Inc. and Superior Pictures, Inc. were subsidiary companies of Edward Small Productions, Inc. In the onscreen cast credits, the roles played by Douglas Kennedy and Robert Wilke are transposed: Kennedy plays "Hort," and Wilke plays "Gad." A modern source adds Chuck Roberson to the cast.