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Eben Martin spends his lifetime accumulating wheat farms in hopes that his sons Chris and Walt will take over the family business and work the land. Chris is more interested in finance, however, and leaves the farm and his fiancée Ellen. He moves to Chicago and uses his cunning and knowledge of wheat to make his fortune at the Board of Trade in the "wheat pit." Chris becomes highly influential with the help of wealthy Henry Flint, and courts Henry's society-bored daughter Cynthia. Back at the farm, Ellen and Walt marry, have children and struggle to maintain the farm and pay the family debts. Walt becomes active in unionizing farmers across the nation. Chris visits the farm with Cynthia to attend the wedding of the Martin's beloved hired hands, Loopey Lou and Lydia. Although Chris is embarrassed by his humble family, Cynthia is touched by their genuine warmth and later accepts his marriage proposal. With the arrival of winter, the poverty-stricken farmers suffer greatly, as banks foreclose on properties such as Loopey Lou's. Walt travels to Chicago, just missing Chris's wedding, but the brothers form an agreement to help each other, in which Walt will call the farmers to strike, and Chris will help raise the wheat prices. The strike is somewhat successful and Walt urges the farmers to remain steadfast. The planting season proves too tempting, though, and the farmers break the strike before getting a good price for the wheat. Despite intense pressure and the threat of losing everything, Chris buys up wheat, maintaining his position until he is insolvent. His spirits remain high with the help of his loving wife, whose father makes Chris a partner in his company. In Washington D.C., Walt influences the government to raise farm prices, and the Martin brothers are hailed as national heroes.