Based on a true event: the strike of the Kalamazoo corset workers in 1912.
Rose Morrison's comfortable life as a banker's wife is upended when her husband suddenly dies. His secret and formidable debts are now hers to somehow pay. To support herself and her son, Rose takes in boarders--but only women with impeccable references. Eventually, though, she reluctantly lowers her standards and boards two seamstresses from the corset factory, who help her clean.
Trouble is brewing at the factory, where a union contract is about to expire. A charismatic organizer arrives from New York to lead the talks and draws Rose into the conflict between the workers and a factory owner bent on killing the union. As Rose's affection and sympathy grow for her boarders, she is confronted with confusing moral choices. It is not enough to care; one must also act.
Anyone who has struggled to do the right thing, even when the cost was high, will be heartened by this story of perseverance against all odds. History buffs will enjoy an insider's look at a little-known strike that reveals the challenges faced by union workers before legislation protected them.