During the 1892 blizzard, pioneer ranching magnate Phil Evarts dies. His Hatchet Ranch is inherited by brother John and daughter Celia. However, much of the ranch is on free grazing land. Many of the local ranchers and cattlemen try to take advantage of Phil Evarts' death by grazing on this land and using its water for free. Ranchers Harve Garrison, Russ Schultz and Ray Cavanaugh desire the Hatchet Ranch's rich grazing land and take it with impunity. Others, like greedy rancher Bide Marriner, want it all for themselves. Even cattle rustlers, like Red Courteen, get involved by rustling cattle from the Evarts family whose power they resent. Because the old rancher Phil Evarts isn't around to protect the Hatchet Ranch anymore, his trusted foreman, Will Ballard, steps-in to safeguard the interests of Phil Evarts' heirs, especially Celia's whom he adores. Celia's fiance, Sam Danfelser, is the jealous type but Celia assures him that she only loves him and she only considers Will a good ... Written by
Luke Short's Saturday Evening Post Fighting Story!
Did You Know?
Screenwriter Mary C. McCall Jr.
said of this film, "From the outset this was as happy a spell of work as occurs but rarely in a screenwriter's life. [Director Joseph Kane
] is an admirer of Luke Short
's work. I loved the novel. In transferring the story to the visual medium we didn't have any problems." See more
Referenced in An American in Rome