It is the turn of the twentieth century in New York. An era is exploding. A century is spinning. And the people are moving in rhythm and rhyme to the music of Ragtime. The story of three groups in America, represented by Coalhouse Walker Jr, a Harlem musician; Mother and her family in New Rochelle; and Tateh, a Jewish immigrant who has come to America with his daughter seeking a new life. It features many historical figures, including Harry Houdini, Booker T. Washington, JP Morgan and Henry Ford.