Nathan Slaughter, a Quaker trapper driven by the deaths of his wife and children to a career of violence against the Indians, who call him the Jibbenainosay, meaning Spirit-that-walks. The whites call the unknown avenger Nick of the Woods, not knowing the man is really the peaceful Quaker they ironically name Bloody Nathan.
Captain Roland Forrester
Captain Roland Forrester, a young Virginia patriot of the Revolutionary War. Disinherited by his Tory uncle, he seeks to start life afresh in the Kentucky country. He is twenty-three. He returns to Virginia when his cousin Edith is named the uncle’s heir; he has to look after his cousin and also Telie Doe.
Roaring Ralph Stackpole
Roaring Ralph Stackpole, a braggart and a thief. Despite his shortcomings, he is loyal to his fellow whites and proves a good fighter against the Indians. He is a frontiersman of the Mike Fink and Davy Crockett type.
Edith Forrester, Roland’s cousin. She is temporarily disinherited when her uncle’s second will cannot be found. After adventures in Kentucky, she is named her uncle’s rightful heir.
Wenonga, a Shawnee chief. He is killed by Nathan Slaughter for leading the attack that resulted in the deaths of Nathan’s family.
Richard Braxley, Major Forrester’s lawyer. He villainously conceals the major’s second will, hoping to marry Edith, produce the second will, and thus come into command of Edith’s fortune. He is killed on the frontier after the second will is found in his possession.
Abel Doe, a white renegade who joins the Indians in their attack on the whites.
Telie Doe, Abel’s daughter, given a home by the Bruce family.
Colonel Bruce, commander of Bruce’s Station, an outpost in the Kentucky country.
Pardon Dodge, a pioneer who helps the Forresters in the Kentucky country.
Major Roland Forrester
Major Roland Forrester, Edith and young Roland’s rich Tory uncle.
Mrs. Bruce, Colonel Bruce’s voluble but hospitable wife.
Tom Bruce, the Bruces’ eldest son, an able Indian fighter.