Judge Garth shoots and kills Paul Willson in Willson's office in San Francisco during a fight over a business venture. Garth believes Willson and his partner Bradford are swindlers. Garth reports it to the police but when they investigate there is no body or evidence of the incident. Garth wakes a federal marshal he knows and tells the history of why he is there. Months earlier Miss Wallace, a widow, arrives in Medicine Bow to open a finishing school for young women. Garth hires her as a governess for Betsy who he had planned to send to school in Boston. Both Garth and Betsy come to love Miss Wallace and enjoy her company. When Betsy sees her searching through Judge Garth's desk, Garth confronts Miss Wallace but she denies it. When she leaves Shiloh during the middle of the night, Garth trails her to San Francisco where he learns the truth about her involvement.