Frimme Hersh, en route from Europe to America, writes a contract with God on a stone. He promises to live a pious, devout life, doing good deeds if God allows him safe passage to his new home. One day, having settled in his New York tenement home, Frimme finds a basket with a baby girl in it upon his doorstep. Frimme tries to raise the girl to the best of his ability, but she dies tragically from an illness at a young age. Filled with bitter rage, Frimme spits upon his contract, throws it out the window and decides to become a successful businessman.