John Wayne is Lt. Col. Kirby Yorke, a Union Officer. The Civil War tore Yorke and his southern born wife apart. Yorke heads to the Rio Grande to fight an Indian tribe but his troubles are just beginning. His long lost, undisciplined son is unexpectedly assigned to his command. As if that isn't enough, his estranged wife shows up at his outpost to protect the interests of their son and to flaunt her charm. Yorkes toughest battles comes when his unorthodox plan to outwit the Apaches leads to a possible court-martial. Now, locked in a bloody battle with the Indians, he must also fight to redeem his honor and to save the love of his family, as well as their lives.