During the Civil War, hundreds of boys were orphaned or abandoned, most ending up on the streets of St. Louis, where they became known as The Gaslight Boys. Duke John Robinson was such a boy. Kidnapped off the streets of St. Louis by Ol’ Slantface, Duke makes his way home after a daring escape, initiated by Captain Grimes, to find as much or more trouble awaiting him there.
Captain Franklin Starr, a neighbor started the trouble when he stole Duke’s saddle and gear. Determined to get his belongings back, Duke begins an odyssey that finds him riding with Nathaniel Bowlin, better known as the Swamp Fox to defend their corner of the world from the encroaching Yankees and to stop Captain Starr.
With no choice, Duke has to grow up fast as he eludes death on more than one occasion. When his father, mortally wounded, appears at the home place and accuses Captain Starr of an ambush, Duke, with the help of his friends searches for justice and retribution for his family.