Cast & Crew
Camp O'Neill comes to Arizona from Oklahoma on the offer of a job from his friend, Lafe Armstrong. The first person Camp meets is Laughing Maxey, who asks him to hold a hot branding iron while he and his men search for some stray cattle. A posse arrives, and seeing Camp with the branding iron, assume he is a rustler and brand him on his chest. Camp then goes into town, where he meets Lafe. He swears to seek revenge on Maxey, whom he believes had tricked him deliberately. Lafe warns Camp that Maxey is a murderer, but the two still go into Maxey's saloon, where an ambush awaits them. Camp pays back his debt to Maxey by branding the saloon owner in the face, but as Camp attempts to leave the saloon, Maxey is shot in the back by his own card shark, Jim Hunter. All assume that Camp is Maxey's murderer, and in the ensuing gunfight, Lafe is seriously wounded as the two men retreat from the saloon. Camp takes Lafe to the home of Dr. John Gray, who orders the injured cowboy to stay in bed. Lafe shows Camp a letter from Molly McCall, the daughter of a friend in Texas, to whom he owes a debt. Camp tells his friend, "I pay my debts--both kinds." As Camp makes his escape to Molly's ranch, Lafe sacrifices himself by riding his horse in the other direction to divert the posse. On his way to the Double O Ranch, Camp learns that his old friend has died. He then assumes his identity, and introduces himself to Molly as Lafe, only to learn that she is giving up her ranch due to a series of threats. Camp accuses Molly's ranch hands of cowardice, then wins a fistfight with her foreman, Gabe Powers, before expelling him from the ranch. Powers is in league with the banker Houseman, who, having discovered that there is oil on the Double O, threatens to foreclose on the ranch if Molly does not pay her mortgage by sundown of the thirteenth. While Houseman suggests that Molly sell the ranch to him, Camp tells her that he will lead a roundup of her cattle and drive them to the railroad for sale. Sheriff Rand suggests that Camp hire some sobered-up cowboys from his jail, as they would be happy to take a job offering gunplay. Houseman orders Powers and his men to stage a surprise raid on the roundup, but Camp and his men are ready for them and rebuff their attack. Meanwhile, Jim, who has taken a job in the town saloon, tells Houseman Camp's true identity, and then attempts to blackmail the crooked banker for $5,000. Houseman orders Powers to kill Jim, but the henchman leaves the wounded gambler in the arms of Camp, who takes Jim back to the Double O, where Molly nurses him back to health. When Sheriff Rand arrives at the ranch to arrest Camp for Maxey's murder, Jim confesses that he is the real culprit. Camp then leaves, promising to meet Molly at the bank before sundown with the proceeds of the cattle sale. Powers and his men intercept Camp on his return and a shootout takes place until Camp's cowhands arrive and free him. Houseman tells the disbelieving Molly that Camp is a fugitive from justice and has fled with her money, but Camp keeps his promise and arrives just as the sun sets. Camp then confesses his true identity to Molly, and Rand, finally knowing the whole truth, takes Houseman into custody. With all their worries now behind them, Camp places his arm around Molly.
Frank La Rue
Modern sources include Glenn Strange, Arthur Wanzer, George Chesebro, Jack Kirk and Silver, the horse in the cast. In 1948, Lambert Hillyer directed another film entitled Sundown Riders, but the two films are otherwise unrelated.