It was a time of turbulence, turmoil and trouble that culminated in the Mexican War and the American Army occupation of what had been part of Mexico since their independence from Spain in 1821. Doña Lona is a woman of wealth and importance in New Mexico and, as the owner of a gambling hall, she becomes involved in the politics of the time. She is a loyal supporter of the Americans and helps them in the days after the conquest when there were still pockets of rebellion. She is in the right place to act as a spy for the new government. Doña Lona is a story based on actual history and the life of the famous gambling queen, María Gertrudis Barceló, better known as Doña Tules. The characters are all part of the real life drama of the settling of the American Southwest.