From Ohio to Mississippi by shantyboat, in the Hoover era of depression. Bill's grandparents, the fiery flamboyant Henrietta and her crippled husband Homer, make the big decision to move on south and the three take to the river. When a big boat almost swamps them, grandma takes the next opportunity to hurl the offending captain into the water; fished out, he becomes a great friend. They run into distant cousins and are able to share food and clothing with them, have the boat stolen by two thieves but get it back, stop the journey abruptly when a crusty old man they've helped offers them some property and profit-sharing. The intention might have been the old story of ""Bill matures,"" but Bill doesn't develop enough for that; instead you get a rich view of river life and river people, folk humor and colorful hick dialogue--like the swapping stories of David the peddler. No beginning or end, just an animated middle full of caricatures and adventures.