Mr. White is a conservative married man, who is content in life but has relatively reckless tendencies. He is also the father of Herbert and is a friend of Sergeant-Major Morris. When Sergeant-Major Morris visits Mr. White's home, he brings with him the ominous, cursed monkey's paw and throws it into the fire after Mr. White questions him about it. Mr. White ends up rescuing the monkey's paw from the fire and casually wishes for two hundred pounds to pay off his mortgage. Tragically, Mr. White's son dies in a work-related accident the next day and the Whites receive two hundred dollars in compensation from Herbert's company. Mrs. White then realizes that her husband's wish came true and was related to her son's death. She then forces Mr. White to make a second wish for their son's return. Later that same night, Mr. White hears a knocking at his front door and desperately grabs the monkey's paw to make a final wish before his zombie son enters their home. Overall, Mr. White is the protagonist of the short story, who keeps the cursed monkey's paw and makes all three wishes.