A sixteen-year old, driven by his widowed mother's necessity at the close of the Civil War, undertakes to drive a couple of thousand Texas longhorns up through the hostile Indians to the North where he can get a better price. With him, as helpers, he takes an odd assortment of young men about his own age, whose characters and personalities are proved on the long hard trail. Despite the ingredients for a fast-paced adventure story (encounters with Indians, floods, storms, stampeding cattle, etc.) the story limps along. Even the potentially thrilling scenes are muted, and there is no sense of mounting climax, no suspense.