Fun Facts Friday: James Fenimore Cooper

September 15, 2017

James Fenimore Cooper (15 September, 1789 – 14 September, 1851) was a popular American writer who is best known for his Leatherstocking Tales featuring Natty Bumppo.

Fun Facts Friday: James Fenimore Cooper

Books by James Fenimore Cooper*

1) Mr. Cooper was born in Burlington, NJ. He was the eleventh of 12 children.

2) In 1790 the family moved to upstate New York by Otsego Lake. The area would later be known as Cooperstown, NY.

3) At age 13 the author was enrolled in Yale University. In his third year, Mr. Cooper was expelled without completing his degree due to some stunts he pulled (blowing up a student’s door and locking a donkey in the recitation room among them).

4) Mr. Cooper went on the US Navy (a fledgling outfit at the time) and became a midshipman. The officer’s warrant confirming his rank was signed by Thomas Jefferson. Later in life he published The History of the Navy of the United States of America(1839), after 14 years of research.

5) After his father’s death, young James Cooper found himself a man of means and married the wealthy Susan Augusta de Lancey. The couple had seven kids, five of whom lived to adulthood.

6) The first novelPrecaution(1820) was written because Mrs. Cooper bet her husband that he could write a novel better than the one she was reading. The novel was published anonymously and received positive reviews.

7)The Spy (1821) was inspired by stories from his friend John Jay became a best seller.

8) Mr. Cooper was the first major American writer to include Native-Americans and African-Americans in his works.

9) The novel Last of the Mohicans is regarded as his masterpiece.

10) In 2013, Cooper was inducted into theNew York Writers Hall of Fame

Books by James Fenimore Cooper*

Zohar — Man of la Book
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account

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