The Last of the Mohicans: A Narrative of 1757 is a historical romance written by James Fenimore Cooper in 1826.
It is the second book of the Leatherstocking Tales pentalogy and the best known to contemporary audiences. The Pathfinder, published 14 years later in 1840, is its sequel. The Last of the Mohicans is set in 1757, during the French and Indian War (the North American theater of the Seven Years’ War), when France and Great Britain battled for control of North America. During this war, both the French and the British used Native American allies, but the French were particularly dependent, as they were outnumbered in the Northeast frontier areas by the British. Specifically, the events of the novel are set immediately before, during, and after the Siege of Fort William Henry.
The novel is set primarily in the area of Lake George, New York, detailing the transport of the two daughters of Colonel Munro, Alice and Cora, to a safe destination at Fort William Henry. Among the caravan guarding the women are the frontiersman Natty Bumppo, Major Duncan Heyward, singing teacher David Gamut, and the Indians Chingachgook and Uncas, the latter two being the novel’s title characters. These characters are sometimes seen as a microcosm of the budding American society, particularly with regard to their racial composition.The novel has been one of the most popular English-language novels since its publication and is frequently assigned reading in American literature courses. It has been adapted numerous times and in many languages for films, TV movies, and cartoons.