A spirited rifle shooting contest and a horse race are the highlights of the Bella County fair, 1929. Victor Stuart and John Dow are in heated competition with each other as they try to impress Julia Vanderkamp. This animosity is fueled by criminal interests afoot in the background. When things go a muck a lynch mob is formed and John Dow is running for his life. Will philosopher Jefferson John Brown (Estate Steward and amateur detective) be able to solve the case? Time is running out.