1900 and the town of Tory, Ill. (pop. 456) as viewed by peeping, prying, eavesdropping little Helene Bradford, the doctor's daughter. She and Gracie, the minister's daughter, head into an exciting summer when stranger Winton Fenton comes to town and loses his heart to Helene's mother. Ensuing activities; a culinary competition between two embattled matrons- riding new bicycles- meeting failure in romance- manufacturing for the Sunday school teacher- the return, without scandal, of Gracie's mother after elopement with the barber. Helene's mother keeps it the best of all possible worlds when she goes to visit Fenton- and returns. Period amiability in a ""nice family"" story.