Born on September 15 to William and Elizabeth (nee Fenimore) Cooper.
Moved with family to Cooperstown, New York, the village founded by his father on Otsego Lake, the source of the Susquehanna River.
Entered Yale College.
Expelled from Yale after perpetrating several pranks.
Joined the Navy as a midshipman.
Inherited $50,000.00 upon the death of his father, who was fatally injured by an assassin while leaving a political meeting.
Married, on January 1, Susan De Lancy, daughter of wealthy landowners in Westchester County, New York.
Became head of the entire Cooper clan after the death of the last of his five elder brothers; assumed full responsibility for Cooper estates then heavily in debt.
Published his first book, Precaution; it was mildly successful.
Published The Spy. This book was praised by reviewers, and brought him international fame, and a certain amount of wealth.
Published The Pioneers, the first of the Leatherstocking Tales. This book is generally considered the first truly American novel.
Continued the Leatherstocking Tales with Last of the Mohicans. Added Fenimore to his name to keep alive his mother's family name.
Moved to Europe for the education of his five children.
Published the third book in the Leatherstocking Tales, The Prairie.
Published Notions of the Americans, a book that offended both British and American critics.
Wrote Letter to General Lafayette for the Finance Controversy, a project which earned him unpopularity at home.
Returned to America to find himself unwelcome in New York City; left there to go live at Cooperstown.
Published the fourth book of the Leatherstocking Tales, The Pathfinder.
Published The Deerslayer, the fifth and final book in the Leatherstocking Tales.
Published his last novel, The Ways of the Hour.
Died at Cooperstown, New York, on September 14, one day before his sixty- second birthday.