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CAMERON'S CABIN ... (Day)


[EXTERIOR CAMERON CABIN - MOHAWK BOY & JAMES CAMERON - MORNING

slam into other kids as they battle through a Lacrosse game. In the background are sixty men, women and children. It's a community gathering held out of doors. We've entered mid-scene. Captain Jack is standing on a box. Some women and kids mill around some tables and boards laid over barrels. Cooking fires. Smoke. Most but not all around Captain Jack are men, nine settlers, 3 hunter/trappers, eight Mohawk farmers in mixed European and native clothing. Off to the side are an English Lieutenant on horseback and a ten-man escort from whatever regiment's in Albany. A man named HENRI speaks in French. His son, MARTIN, translates.]

HENRI: [O.S. in French]

MARTIN: [translates] My father says he was driven out of France by the black robe priests and he would fight them now but he lost his arm and so I will go in his place.

[Meanwhile ...

ONGEWASGONE

is an unusually large Mohawk in a blue match coat with a little girl holding his hand. He says something to Chingachgook who nods. Hawkeye and Uncas are a little apart in an outer grouping of the men. Ongewasgone is a war chief and wears a white plume and is tattooed. As Martin finishes, he steps forward.]

ONGEWASGONE: John Cameron, thank you for your hospitality ... Twin River Mohawk got no quarrel with Les Francais. Trade furs with Les Francais. Now Les Francais bring Huron onto Mohawk hunting grounds ...

[These people are English, Scots-Irish and Dutch farmers; some French Huguenot "mechanics" (craftsmen). They're in shirt-sleeves and Indian moccasins & leggings. The Mohawks' vast lands and corn agriculture border the settlement. They've been acculturated for over a hundred years. Some wear European calico hunting shirts. Their heads are shaved to scalping locks and many are tattooed. They've politically and commercially played France & England against each other very adroitly for over a hundred years because of their military power and geographic position. Their relations with working farmers and settlers and their families has been mostly one of co-existence because there's always been more than enough for all. This is a WPA mural of ethnic diversity and plurality of frontier America. The Europeans are former indentured laborers, farmers exiled by economics or religious persecution, frontier hunters and trappers ... working people.]

ONGEWASGONE: [continues] Now Mohawk will fight Huron and Les Francais. My brothers have asked me to lead them in this war so I speak for the Twin River Council.

[The importance of this commitment is apparent to the lieutenant.]

LIEUTENANT: His Majesty King George II is very grateful for your support.

IAN: How far up the valley?

LIEUTENANT: To Fort William Henry.

COLONIAL #1: ... two days from here.

[Some don't like this.]

LIEUTENANT: It should be enough to remind you France is the enemy.

HAWKEYE: Your enemy ...

[Heads turn to Hawkeye at the periphery of the crowd.]

LIEUTENANT: What did you say?

HAWKEYE: [loud] I said ... France is your enemy. Not ours.

LIEUTENANT: Really? Do you want them to overrun all New York colony?

HAWKEYE: First place, you started it with the French over fur-trapping claims to the head waters of the Ohio. [smiles] Now you're sayin' these people have a fight on their hands ...

LIEUTENANT: [ignoring Hawkeye] Will you men help us stop the French?

HAWKEYE: ... and while they are cooped up in your fort, what if the French send war parties to raid their homes?

IAN: What then, Lieutenant?

LIEUTENANT: For your own homes, for king, for country, that's why you men ought to join this fight!

HAWKEYE: You do what you want with your own scalp. Do not be tellin' us what to do with ours.

LIEUTENANT: [furious; to Hawkeye] You, sir! You call yourself a loyal subject?

HAWKEYE: ... No ... Do not call myself much of a subject at all.

[Light laughter.]

COLONIAL #2: Nathaniel's right. But if I got to fight, figure I'll try and do it fifty miles north of here instead of my bean field.

AD LIBS: Yes. Yeah. No ...

CAMERON: I am stayin' on my farm. And any man who goes, his family is welcome to fort-up with us 'til he comes back.

JACK: Boys. My sense of it is enough of us will join-up to fill the county's levy. But only if General Webb accepts a few terms I got in mind ...

[HAWKEYE & UNCAS

cross through the people. A few men drift off to their women at the tables. It is apparent two-thirds of the men will join. A couple of jokes, light banter, no hostility.]

AD LIBS [O.S.] Webb? what's that, Jack ...?

[As they cross through they start removing their shirts and weapons.]

IAN: You boys marchin' with us? What do you say?

UNCAS: We had our say, Ian.

[They approach the Lacrosse field. Chingachgook stands with Cameron in the background, watching.

LACROSSE FIELD

Uncas joins James. Hawkeye goes on the other side. A couple of young Mohawks and a young blonde farmer shout hallo's and as the bodies crash into each other ...

CUT TO ...]

ALBANY ... part 1


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