Jesse J. Goldburg's small-scale Independent Pictures scooped the competition when they managed to hire such proven box-office attractions as William Desmond, Ruth Stonehouse and Robert Edeson. The result was a rousing Western melodrama starring Helen Holmes (of Hazards of Helen fame) as the daughter of a beleaguered railroad president. When the building of a new line is being sabotaged by a spy (Mack V. Wright) from a rival company, railroad president Edeson and daughter Holmes hire construction engineer Desmond. All set to join the enemy because his father was once fired by Edeson, Desmond makes the "mistake" of falling in love with Holmes. The railroad line is finished on time, and in a last desperate attempt at sabotage, Wright unleashes a runaway engine. Holmes, who had been through all this many times before, knows just what to do and manages to reach the switch in time to save the day. Like so many of her previous railroad adventures, Blood and Steel was directed by Holmes' husband, J.P. McGowan.