Here is a story of the prairie in the mid 1800's, when American citizens and European immigrants rushed to the Nebraska prairie to secure their free 160 acres and build their homesteads. It's a story of young people in a young country, of Jim Burden from Virginia and barefoot Antonia Shimerda from Bohemia. Neighbors on a vast sea of rolling grass, sharing the hardships of living in sod houses and farming land that had never seen a plow. The prairie was both a lonely and friendly land, lonely with its empty distances and friendly because pioneer settlers felt an instinctive bond with each other. This is their story, how and why they endured and succeeded.