Will Texas be independent or a U.S. state? Ex-President Andrew Jackson recruits cattleman Devereaux Burke to travel through hostile Indian land, find Texas hero Sam Houston and persuade him to support annexation. In exchange, Burke will gain a contract to sell beef to U.S. forces during the war with Mexico sure to follow statehood. Hel also garner something unexpected: the love of beauteous Austin newspaper publisher Martha Ronda. Clark Gable and Ava Gardner play the love-fated pair in this rugged semihistorical saga of Lone Star destiny. Standing in the way: Thomas Craden (Broderick Crawford), the ardent independence advocate and paramilitary leader who desires Martha for himself. Vincent Sherman directs. The top supporting cast includes Lionel Barrymore (as Jackson), Beulah Bondi and Ed Begley.