A retired whaling captain, Captain Sligo, gets into a fistfight while traveling through a backwoods town. When he learns that there is no jail in which to house the man who started it, he drags the gent all the way to Dodge City, where there is a sheriff. Deciding to settle in Dodge, Sligo figures he will buy some cattle that are for sale very cheap, and set up a ranch with the aid of a widow whose property he leases. Warned by the Widow Burney, Sligo ignores her advice that there is something wrong with the price of those cattle. After purchase, he learns from Matt Dillon that they have a disease caused by ticks and are therefore quarantined to a certain area. Sligo outwits the men who sold him the raw deal, but though they give him his money back and then some, they take revenge on his faithful Bo'sun. Sligo wallops the men responsible for injuring his friend. All the while he is getting in and out of trouble, Captain Sligo courts the Widow Burney, who loves him but finds him detestable. When he bets her hand in marriage if he can grow a corn crop, he ends up winning her hand with the help of her children, who adore him and his whaling stories.