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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 500

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Sergeant Galbraith (Horseshoe) Robinson

Sergeant Galbraith (Horseshoe) Robinson, a shrewd, rustic, good-natured colonial patriot. Tall, broad, brawny, and erect, he is brave, scornful of the British and their Tory supporters, and ingenious in aiding Butler and others among the patriots. A somewhat idealized version of the pioneer, he may be compared with such historical ones as Daniel Boone and David Crockett and with a fictional one like Leather-stocking.

Major Arthur Butler

Major Arthur Butler, his handsome, gentlemanly friend, who is captured along with Horseshoe by Tories, escapes with the aid of John Ramsay and Mary Musgrove, is captured again by British troops, and is rescued this time by Horseshoe. With the end of the Tory ascendancy in South Carolina, Butler and his wife Mildred are free to live a long and happy life together.

Philip Lindsay

Philip Lindsay, a Loyalist because of financial interests in England but sympathetic with Mildred over her distress at Butler’s capture. He is fatally wounded while accompanying Tyrrel in a search for Mildred, who had gone to seek clemency for Butler from Cornwallis. Before dying, Lindsay forgives Mildred and Henry for their support of the patriot cause.


Mildred, Lindsay’s daughter, secretly married to Butler for a year but forbidden by her father to see him because of his colonial army connections. In her determination to save Butler from harm, she is reminiscent of James Fenimore Cooper’s intrepid heroines—even to her fainting when she greets her dear rescued husband.


Henry, Lindsay’s son, sympathetic to the American cause. He fights at King’s Mountain and discovers Tyrrel’s body after the battle.

Wat Adair

Wat Adair, a Tory woodman and deceitful former friend of Butler, who thinks him a patriot. He is captured at King’s Mountain and punished for his treachery.


Tyrrel, a disguised English officer who visits the Lindsay home supposedly to enlist aid for the Loyalists but actually to court Mildred, who despises him. He is killed at King’s Mountain.

Mary Musgrove

Mary Musgrove, a patriot, Wat Adair’s pretty relative who warns Butler of Wat’s treachery and who later informs the captured Butler of rescue plans for him.

John Ramsay

John Ramsay, Mary’s sweetheart, a trooper who aids in Butler’s first escape but is killed shortly afterward.

James Curry

James Curry, a rascally Tory spy masquerading as Tyrrel’s servant. At King’s Mountain, he is captured by rebel forces.

General Gates

General Gates, commander of the patriot forces.

Lord Cornwallis

Lord Cornwallis, gentlemanly commander of the British forces.

Allen Musgrove

Allen Musgrove, Mary’s elderly father.

Stephen Foster

Stephen Foster, a woodman and lieutenant of mounted patriot riflemen.

Michael Lynch

Michael Lynch, a friend of the Adairs. An opportunist willing to support either side, he submits to Wat’s conviction that Tory support is more profitable because the Tories will win.

Hugh Habershaw

Hugh Habershaw, captain of a gang of ruffians, including Curry, who capture Butler and Horseshoe.

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