Out for a morning ride, Betsy Garth encounters a man on foot, David Henderson (Glenn Corbett), who is foraging for food. She offers him breakfast but he refuses. Meanwhile, Emmett Ryker is called to a dispute at a local mine. Calder (John Doucette), the boss of the mine, is trying to get rid of the miners led by Sam Claypool (Ford Rainey) who refuse to work citing safety problems. Emmett says he will talk to Judge Garth to try and find a solution but Calder says he will handle it. The Judge agrees to look for a solution. Betsy returns from her ride and Randy Benton tells the Virginian she has been acting "skittish." David Henderson arrives at Shiloh having been picked up by Trampas and Betsy does get to cook him breakfast although the Virginian is suspicious of him.
The Judge and Betsy give David a ride to town but on the way the Judge stops by the mine as he promised Emmett Ryker. They find one of the shafts has collapsed, trapping Sam Claypool. David says he knows mines and also reveals he was a Minister so needs to help Sam. He enters the mine with another miner, Pine (Jack Lambert). They manage to get Sam extricated although David hurts his leg and when they get outside they find Sam has died so David leads a prayer over his body. David is taken to Shiloh where Betsy nurses him. The Judge suggests the miners need guidance and David might be just the man for it. David reveals his father was a miner and that he grew up in a mining town. Later, Mrs. Claypool (Virginia Christine) and Pine come to ask David for assistance, saying the men respect him for his attempt to save Sam and that they need a leader who will represent them.
The Judge tells Betsy David is running away from something and Randy confesses to Trampas he thinks Betsy is mooning over David. David tells the Judge he thinks a strike is in order and leaves in the night for the mine. The next morning Betsy is distraught and reveals to her father that she loves David. At the mine, David is told by Calder to leave but he learns from the miners that contrary to what Calder promised the Judge, he has not closed down the dangerous shaft until such time as the owners can be contacted. Betsy goes riding to where she first met David and finds him there too and they kiss. He tells her however, that he can not become involved because all the people he has become involved with, namely his father and his former fiancee, died and he feels responsible. He also tells her to tell the Judge a strike is being called.
Calder refuses to budge and gets a court order forcing Emmett to clear out the miners so he can replace them with other men whom Emmett is also supposed to protect. Emmett waits with The Virginian, Trampas and Randy who are to help him protect the new men but when the new men arrive it is clear they are hard cases and not miners, brought in to intimidate the miners. Emmett confiscates their guns and takes them in a wagon to the mine accompanied by his Shiloh assistants. Meanwhile, the Judge and Betsy have arrived at the mine and David tells him the miners will stand and does not listen to the Judge's entreaties. Emmett and his entourage arrive and he tries to get the miners to put down clubs they are holding. However, one miner throws a rock and a melee ensues which is only stopped when Emmett fires some shots into the air. David lectures the miners, telling them he agreed to stand up for them but only if they do not use violence. He tells them the new men are not miners so can not take their jobs so they might as well just walk away and let Judge Garth have time to help them and they leave.
The Judge manages to get the miners and owners to negotiate and everything seems to be working out. David tells Betsy he has christened a child at the mine, has written his superiors asking them to give him a parish nearby, and asks Betsy to marry him. She says she will follow him wherever he goes and he is assigned a parish in Pennsylvania. Randy and Betsy go riding and he gives her a wooden carving of a horse he has made so she can remember their rides. A wedding is held at Shiloh with the Judge marrying the two and only Trampas (as best man), The Virginian, Emmett and Randy in attendance. Then, they and the other Shiloh hands escort the buggy with the newlyweds off the Shiloh Ranch.