"Barn Burning" is the story of Sarty Snopes, whose father, Abner, burns barns in a type of revenge against the wealthy. Sarty decides not to help his father get away with it anymore, and informs Major de Spain of what is about to happen; Major de Spain shoots Abner, and Sarty runs away.
"Two Soldiers" is narrated by a young boy whose older brother, Pete, decides to go off to fight in WWII. The narrator follows him to Memphis on foot and by bus, but is sent home again since he cannot come along to the war.
The narrator of "A Rose for Emily" is the voice of the town of Jefferson. Miss Emily is an old maid who represents a time past; the town gossips about her when she begins seeing Homer Barron. After her death, it is discovered that she poisoned him with arsenic and kept his rotting corpse in their would-be marriage bed.
"Dry September" describes the murder of Will Mayes, a black man accused of raping a white woman. The woman, Miss Minnie Cooper, has started a vague rumor that leads to a gang of white men abducting Will Mayes and shooting him. Hawkshaw, a barber who defends Mayes, is unable to stop it.
"That Evening Sun" is narrated by Quentin Compson and centers around the Compson family and Nancy, their black servant. Nancy has become pregnant with a white man's child, and now is petrified that she will be murdered by Jesus, her violent husband. She brings the children back to her cabin as protection, but eventually their father takes them home.
In "Red Leaves," Issetibeha, the chief (the Man) of the Chickasaw Indians, has died. It is likely that his son, Moketubbe, has murdered him for power. Now the Indians are searching for his slave, whom they want to bury alive with the dead chief and his dog and horse. The slave runs through the woods for over a week, but is eventually caught.
"Lo!" tells the story of Francis Weddel, more recent chief of the Chickasaw Indians. He has come to Washington with all his people in order to seek justice for his nephew, who probably murdered a white man. The President and Secretary are overwhelmed by the Indians on their land, and fake a trial in order to get rid of them.
In "Turnabout," American pilot Captain Bogard takes Claude Hope, a young British midshipman, along on a mission. He and the other Americans think Hope and his fellow midshipmen don't encounter battle, but are proven wrong with Hope takes Bogard along with him on a torpedo ship.
"Honor" is narrated by Buck Monaghan, a wing-walker who has fought as a pilot. He now works for a barnstorming show, and falls in love with his coworker, Rogers's, wife, Mildred. They have an affair, but when Rogers condones it, Buck loses interest.
"There Was a Queen" centers around the Sartoris family, after the death of the men except for Isom and young Benbow. Narcissa has gone to Memphis for two nights to sleep with a Federal agent in exchange for the return of inappropriate letters he has confiscated. When she confesses to Virginia Du Pre, who is ninety, the old woman dies.
In "Mountain Victory," a white-trash Yankee family in Tennessee allows Saucier Weddel and Jubal, his ex-slave, to spend the night with them. However, when the daughter in the family becomes romantically interested in him, he and Jubal must flee. Hule, the young son, leads them into a trap set by his brother, Vatch, and father; at the last minute he changes his mind and tries to sacrifice himself to save Weddel, but they all end up being killed.
"Beyond" takes place in the just-deceased mind of Judge Howard Allison. His son died before him, and as he encounters people in the wayward station between life and death, they urge him to look for his son. In the end, he decides to stay true to his mindset of rationality, and not turn to faith.
In "Race at Morning," the young narrator and Mister Ernest spend a day hunting a buck. When they finally corner it, Mister Ernest purposefully empties his gun so that he cannot kill the buck. He tells the narrator that he must go to school to become more than a farmer/hunter.