An ambitious woman takes on her corrupt brothers and honest husband in her drive for wealth. In the deep South at the turn of the 20th century, shrewish Regina Giddens readies her household in anticipation of a dinner to honor William Marshall, a wealthy Chicago industrialist who is thinking of building a cotton mill in their small town. Gathered at the table to honor Marshall are Regina's sweet young daughter Alexandra, her greedy brothers, shopkeepers Ben and Oscar Hubbard, and Oscar's wife and son, Birdie and Leo. When the kind-hearted Birdie begins to chatter, Oscar cruelly accuses her of living in the past glory of her failed family fortune and once grand plantation.
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