The Lion's Den
Cast & Crew
Wealthy Texas rancher Knute Merwin and his daughter Ann visit New York, where Knute withdraws $20,000 cash from the Cattlemen's Association Bank. That night, at a nightclub where cowboy Tim Barton performs sharpshooting tricks with the help of his stooge, Paddy Callahan, Knute is held up at gunpoint and Tim saves him. Knute then hires Tim to help save his Cross Bar X ranch, which is under threat by cattle rustler Nate Welsh. On the train West with Tim and Paddy is Texas gunman Single Shot Smith, who is handcuffed to a Ranger. Paddy, somewhat dim-witted, releases Smith, who has been hired by Welsh, and he escapes. Welsh, who has acquired a majority of the stock in the local Texas bank, has been foreclosing ranch after ranch to build his cattle empire. When the train arrives, Welsh, who has never seen Smith, believes Tim is the killer, and the Merwins assume he has double-crossed them. Welsh then appoints Tim boss of his gang of gunmen, all of whom have a price on their heads. When the real Smith arrives, Tim maintains his false identity and forces Smith to leave. That night, Welsh's men steal the Merwins' cattle and kill one of their ranch hands. Paddy deserts Tim, unaware that his duplicity toward the Merwins is honorable, and leads the Merwins to their cattle. A gunfight ensues and the Merwins win back their herd and hire Paddy and the real Smith to fight Welsh. The county sheriff then prints a reward poster for Single Shot Smith, using Tim's picture in order to secure his position with Welsh. When Welsh's gunman, Slim Burtis, discovers that the men guarding the Merwin cattle are all dead and Paddy is missing, he begins to suspect Tim and, that night, tries to kill him. Tim and Paddy successfully apprehend Slim and Smith and turn them in to the sheriff for a reward. Welsh then orders the bank to foreclose on the Cross Bar X ranch. After Ann tells Welsh that Tim is not Smith, Welsh hands him over to the sheriff, but he lets him go. Tim then outbids Welsh for the Merwin ranch at the public auction. When Welsh demands that Tim pay in cash, Tim rounds up Welsh's wanted gunmen, together with those dead at the canyon, and collects enough reward money to reclaim the ranch for Ann and Knute. When Ann asks Tim to stay, he asks her if she can cook.