It is 1892 in Homestead, Pennsylvania. A steel strike, an injury, and death by a train accident, leaves Charley and Jennie O'Brien orphaned and homeless.
This is a coming of age story about Charley as he and his sister ride the orphan train to a foster home in Kansas. They, along with their friend, Christina Batachi, fresh out of a Pittsburgh street gang, experience unimaginable hardships in their new homes.