In 1859, Shields "Emperor" Greene, descendant of African kings, is a slave in South Carolina. When he ends up on a new plantation run by a cruel overseer, Shields kills the overseer and flees with his son for freedom. With a bounty hunter at their heels, Shields pays an abolitionist for his son's freedom. In Maryland, Shields comes across John Brown and Frederick Douglass before Brown's historic raid on the arsenal at Harpers Ferry. Douglass declares the mission suicide, and won't participate. Shields, knowing what is at stake, follows Brown into Harpers Ferry and history. 1 hr. 39 min.