In 1898 three young girls leave a Dublin orphanage to enter a life of
domestic service. They are placed in the home of Captain Charles
Whitmore but soon discover that the household is in turmoil. Charles,
hoping to amass a fortune, is preparing to set off on a long sea voyage,
deliberately leaving his wife Georgina almost penniless to fend for
herself and the servants.
Georgina, who has been desperate to break free from a life of violent
marital abuse, is relieved that he will be gone for some years,
but nevertheless the future is frightening.
Then help comes from an unexpected quarter. An organisation that helps
women escape lives of abuse or genteel poverty makes Georgina an
offer. They propose that her house should become a school
designed to train such women to seek employment in the American West.
The very idea is at once shocking and appealing.
Can Georgina step into the unknown and lead the women under
her care into the future?
The orphan maids listen and wonder. Can they too dare to dream
of a better life for themselves?