Circumstantial evidence pointed to Joe Walkingstick, the Cherokee park ranger, as the person obstructing Alec Coatsworth and his cousin Jimmy as they dug into the old Indian mound on grandmother's farm in the west. The boys unearthed Indian artifacts and a skeleton. Before the boys solve the problem of the mysterious intruder at their diggings, they are involved in a shooting and locked up in the Cherokee's cabin. Then Uncle Zan, an archaeologist, rescues them and together they identify the thief as a mink which hasn't been hinted at anywhere until the final chapters. Characterization is sketchy, the locale is undefined and the action seems haphazard to this reader.