Cooper, James F. The Last of the Mohicans
. New York: Dover
The Last of the Mohicans
The story takes place in the late 1750’s, during the French and Indian War.
General Montcalm of
the French allied up with several Native American Indian tribes, and started moving his army south to
attack the British at Fort William Henry in hopes of taking over.
An Indian scout by the name of Magua
hears word about the attack of Fort William Henry and passed it on to British General Webb, to whom
Magua is loyal.
Webb then sends troops to reinforce Colonel Munro, and dispatched the young Major
Heyward to escort his daughters Alice and Cora Munro on their journey to visit him.
When the daughters
left Magua agreed to guide Heyward and General Webb’s daughters to Fort William Henry, through a
shortcut only known by the Indians.
Soon after they left Fort Edward, they meet a stranger by the name
of David Gamut who is a psalmodist, one who worships the singings of the Old Testament psalms.
likes David Gamut, and he joins their group and sings a song native to New England.
Gamut’s performance and tells Heyward they must be silent since hostile Indian tribes fill the forest.
Major Heyward then looks around the forest looking for Indians.
He doesn’t see them because they are
hiding up in the tree branches.
The story then introduces two more characters Hawkeye, a white hunter, and Chingachgook, a
Hawkeye wears a hunting shirt, a skin cap, and buckskin leggings.
He carries a knife, a
pouch, a horn, and a long rifle. Chingachgook is almost naked and covered in war-paint and carries a
short rifle and a tomahawk.
Chingachgook and his son were the only remaining members of the Mohican
Soon after, Chingachgook’s son Uncas emerges.
Uncas had been trailing the enemies of the
Mohicans, the Maquas.
Chingachgook then hears the sound of horses approaching.
Heyward and the rest
of his bunch come upon Hawkeye.
Hawkeye stops them and questions the group.
Heyward and Gamut
told Hawkeye that Magua, their guide, has gotten them lost in the forest.
Hawkeye thinks this is
suspicious, because an Indian doesn’t get lost in the forest, it’s their home.
Hawkeye then learns that