James Fenimore Cooper was the most popular American writer of his day, but today he is best known for The Last of the Mohicans. A part of his "Leatherstocking Tales", The Last of the Mohicans takes place in 1757 during the French and Indian War, when France and England battled for control of the American and Canadian colonies. It features Cooper's best-known character, the woodsman Natty Bumppo, also known as "Hawkeye" or "Leatherstocking." Hawkeye is brave, noble, honest and respects the customs of the Indians.
The Last of the Mohicans is a story of adventure on the American frontier. It is a story of love and loyalty, and of America's coming of age. While the French and Indians besiege Fort William Henry, Cora and Alice Munro, daughters of the English commander, are on their way to join him. They are accompanied by Major Duncan Heyward, Alice's fiance, and by the treacherous Indian Magua, who secretly serves the French. Magua plans to betray the party to the Iroquois, and to claim Cora as his wife, but he is foiled by the scout Hawkeye and his companions, Chingachgook and his son Uncas, who deliver the girls to their father. After the fall of the fort, the girls are given safe passage by the French, but Magua captures them and they become prisoners of the Indians. To rescue Alice and Cora, Hawkeye and Uncas lead the Mohicans against the Hurons, an action filled with unforeseen consequences for all of them.