Nelson Lee

Real Name

Nelson Lee

First Appearance

"A Dead Man's Secret" (in The Halfpenny Marvel #46, September 19, 1894)

Original Publisher

Alfred Harmsworth

Created by

Dr. John Staniforth aka Maxwell Scott


Nelson Lee was a British detective who solved mysteries and undertook adventures around the world. He was "aquiline, with sunken yet clear eyes...he could even be called good-looking." He preferred to solve cases pacing around in the comfort of his lavishly decorated apartment on Gray's Inn Road. For his domestic tendencies, he was known as the "dressing-gown detective." However, he did end up facing incredible perils and exploring fantastic regions around the world. He had subterranean adventures, explored a hidden land in Brazil, inhabited by dinosaurs, and battled cults and persons with supernatural powers. While being hunted by a Chinese Triad, Lee and Nipper hid out at St. Frank's School, a "venerable public school" in the Bellton area of Sussex. When the case ended, Lee remained at the school as a housemaster while Nipper attended.

Nelson's arch enemy was Professor Cyrus Zingrave who ran the Green Triangle syndicate. Lee was best friends with Sexton Blake and collaborated with him on a number of occasssions. He also took on two of Blake's enemies: Dr. Huxton Rymer and Wonder-Man

Supporting Cast

Nipper (Richard Hamilton): A poor, dirty street urchin taken in by Nelson Lee. He was an acrobat and memorized large volumes of poetry.

Eileen Dare: A female detective engaged to Captain Billy Masters. May be related to Daisy Dare and Lucille Dare.

Lord Dorrimore: The happy-go-lucky, adventurous millionaire who accompanied Lee on many of his international adventures, and whose yacht, the SS Wanderer, was often the aquatic command base for the trips.

Umlosi: A mighty African warrior and chief of his people, the Kutana tribe, a "noble and honourable race who live in the dense forests in Central Africa." Umlosi became the Kutana's chief by defeating his half-brother Fatoomba. He is a giant, around 7 feet tall, and unusually strong. He is a fierce fighter, capable of leaving a trail of corpses behind him with or without his great spear. His snake visits him in his dreams and when he is awake to advise him, warning him of danger (in which case, he would see "red mists") and talling him things he could not otherwise know. He sometimes accompanied Lord Dorrimore on his adventures. Umlosi called Dorrie "N'Kose," Lee "Umtagati," because Umlosi believed that Lee had magical powers, and Nipper "Manzie," meaning "water," because of the sparkling quality of Nipper's eyes. [The Ivory Seekers by Edwy Searles Brooks] (June 9, 1917)

Jean Moreau: A brilliant French detective who aided Nelson Lee in investigations, until he became a criminal himself.

Rajah: Nelson Lee's ferocious, intelligent, and faithful bloodhound.

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