Western drama starring Charlton Heston. In the aftermath of the American Civil War, Colt Saunders (Heston) returns to his Texas ranch after having fought on the losing Confederate side, bringing with him his new wife Lorna (Anne Baxter). In his absence the ranch has been run by his Mexican foreman Innocencio (Gilbert Roland) and Colt's invalid brother Cinch (Tom Tryon). Cinch is reluctant to give up control of the ranch, and when Colt refuses to sell his share he goes behind his back to sell the property to a wealthy northerner. Colt soon discovers that there is a plot to kill him and seize control of the ranch, but even more devastating is the revelation that his pregnant wife Lorna used to be a prostitute.