Thirty years ago, Jonah Hutchinson went to prison for killings committed during a range war. When he returns to Dodge, he finds that his son has sold some of the land and allowed squatters to use other parts of it.
Jonah convinces his grandsons to help him restore the Hutchinson name by reclaiming their land rights. They begin burning out squatters, branding loose calves with their brands, and diverting water needed for other ranchers' pastures. They begin rebuilding the Hutchinson House ruins.
Matt takes Sam, Jonah's grown son, aside and advises him to regain control of his sons before Jonah gets them killed or starts another range war. He then rides out with Sam to the ruins hoping he can talk some sense into Jonah. Matt advises Jonah he's under arrest for inciting a riot and tries to talk him into coming in without violence.
Sam commands his sons to take off their gun belts and explains that he ran during the fight at Hutchinson House. Sam accuses Jonah of using people to build his reputation and says he will not allow his sons to be used. He challenges his sons to fight him for their right to continue the range war and they back down. As Matt tells Sam he'd rather not put Jonah in jail, Jonah fires on Sam. Matt draws and is forced to kill the old man.
Back at the Long Branch, Doc says that Jonah meant to die and decided to pick the time and the place for it. Matt reminds them that Jonah was still the first man to settle the area and therefore worth remembering.