J. W. Regal, on his deathbed, wants to make sure his unofficially adopted son, Lew Stark, will inherit the great ranch they have built together. There isn’t time to make a formal will, so Regal has his second wife, Leona, witness the scrap of paper on which he states his intention. Leona keeps this a secret. Without a will, she gets half of the .45 Ranch, and the other half is divided equally among Regal’s four biological sons, all of whom hate Lew Stark. Confronted with this formidable opposition and knowing Regal’s intentions to leave the ranch to him, Lew stubbornly decides to hang on and fight the heirs with the same determination J. W. Regal demonstrated while building up the .45 Ranch in the first place, even though he will certainly have to do it alone.