The Justice Society of America was founded in 1940 after several super-heroes saved the life of President Franklin D Roosevelt. Eight of the world's greatest heroes all banded together to stop Adolf Hitler's invasion of Britain and to protect President Roosevelt from a group of Valkyries summoned by Hitler.
These heroes were Green Lantern (Alan Scott), the Flash (Jay Garrick), the Spectre (Jim Corrigan), Doctor Fate (Kent Nelson), Hourman (Rex Tyler), the Sandman (Wesley Dodds), the Atom (Al Pratt) and Hawkman.
When US involvement in WW II seemed inevitable, President Roosevelt suggested that these costumed heroes band together as a team to defend US shores. The costumed heroes agreed to be this team to fight the Axis powers. Superman and Batman were also honorary members of the JSA.
The Justice Society of America made their first appearance in All-Star Comics #3 in 1940. They were created by Sheldon Mayer and comic book legend Gardner Fox. Mayer and Fox worked with other writers and artists for this debut.
During WW II, the Justice Society acquired the wartime name, the Justice Battalion, as the first line of defense for the US. On the US home front, the JSA would continue to deal with crime and super-villains as well as Axis spies and saboteurs. The first headquarters for the JSA was a hotel suite in New York City. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the US government created the All-Star Squadron, which banded together every costumed hero. The JSA became one of the most active parts of the All-Star Squadron.
Other costumed heroes that joined the JSA were Johnny Thunder and his Thunderbolt, Doctor Mid-Nite (Charles McNider), Mr. Terrific (Terry Sloane), Starman (Ted Knight), Wildcat (Ted Grant), Wonder Woman, Black Canary (Dinah Drake) and Hawkgirl. After the war, the team would move their headquarters into a brownstone building in Gotham City.
Superman and Batman were later retconned as not being born yet until the Modern Age and were never members of the JSA. Miss America was later retconned as being a member of the team. Queen Hippolyta was later retconned as being the Golden Age Wonder Woman.
Silver Age & Bronze Age
After the JSA disbanded and retired in the early 1950s, they would come out of retirement to reform the team again in 1963 when contacted by another group of super-heroes from a parallel earth. The Justice League of America from Earth-1 needed the help of the JSA who came from Earth-2 to fight the Crime Champions. The JSA and the JLA defeated their enemies and would continue to meet on an annual basis.
A few years later, after a JLA/JSA team-up, Black Canary would leave the JSA to join the JLA. After the return of the JSA, other heroes that joined the JSA were the adult Robin, the Star Spangled Kid, Power Girl and the Huntress (Helena Wayne). Years later, the Star Spangled Kid, Power Girl and the Huntress joined a team called Infinity, Inc. whose members were the offspring or wards of the JSA.
In a later retcon, it was established that the JSA's Golden Age Black Canary was the mother of the JLA's Silver Age Black Canary. The adult Robin and the Huntress were later retconned as never existing in this continuity.
After the events of the Crisis on Infinite Earths, the JSA experience significant changes in their lives which led to another battle to save the world. Green Lantern, Flash, Hawkman, Hourman, Atom, Doctor Mid-Nite, Johnny Thunder, Starman, Sandman, Wildcat and Sand agreed to battle gods for eternity in limbo to prevent the end of the world. They escaped, but in Zero Hour, the villain Extant killed Atom, Hourman, and Dr. Mid-Nite. Flash and Green Lantern disbanded the JSA.
The Dark Lord Mordru murdered the Wesley Dodds/Sandman. This caused many retired members of the JSA to come back and reform a new, modern JSA, consisting of Flash, Green Lantern, Wildcat, Hawkman, Sand, Atom-Smasher, the new Mr. Terrific, Star-Spangled Kid, new Dr. Fate, new Hawkgirl, and more. They fought crime for a long time, with miscellaneous enemies. The greatest event and challenge was the event Darkness, where Mordru, Obsidian, and Eclipso tried to plunge the world into eternal night.
Recently, a vigilante group consisting of Black Adam, Eclipso, Northwind, Brainwave, and Atom-Smasher took the law into their own hands. They started a violent coup in the terrorist nation of Kandaq to end the JSA. This also exposed that Mister Mind was manipulating the JSA. This was called Black Reign, and it greatly affected the JSA. It caused Captain Marvel to quit. But the Justice Society of America fights crime still as the Best of the Best.
Although most of the members of the Justice Society were old-timers when space travel was still merely the stuff of science fiction, the veteran heroes now escape Earth's gravity aboard the stylish Star Rocket Racer, built and maintained by Pat Dugan, once the costumed adult sidekick Stripesy to the first Star-Spangled Kid.
Major Story Arcs
New Age of the Justice Society
Following World War III in which Black Adam was taking out his anger upon the world and the 52 story arc, a new JSA formed around Jay Garrick, Alan Scott, and Wildcat. They decide to restart the team and include as many legacy heroes as possible. Feeling the need to train this new generation of heroes, the 3 elders contact many former members to join up as well as hunting down new legacies. Power Girl, Stargirl, Mr. Terrific, and Dr. Mid-Nite are all among the returning members.
Unknown to the Society, Vandal Savage is also hunting legacy heroes and killing them with the help of other villains such as the Fourth Reich. The new Mr. America is on his trail and proves crucial in helping the Society take him down.
Wildcat also discovers his son during this story arc. His son takes the name Wildcat as well when his powers allow him to become a feral cat. Other new heroes to join the Justice Society during this time are Cyclone, Starman, Damage, and the new Wildcat.
The Lightning Saga
New dynamics are being established on the team due to the presence of new members. Jay, Alan, and Wildcat are now seen as trainers of a new generation while real authority lies with Chairwoman Power Girl. Stargirl and Cyclone form a reluctant friendship, at least on Stargirl's part. Cyclone's eccentric attitude annoys Stargirl but the two become friends despite. Hourman and Liberty Belle take over a protective parental relationship with Damage due to his troubled past. Starman is completely bonkers due to the effects of his time-traveling.
The new Justice Society teams up with the new Justice League during the events of the Lightning Saga. Many members of the Legion of Superheroes have returned to the past and new Justice Society member Starman is one of them. Now the 2 teams work together in synthesis to discover what is really going on. The Legion are attempting to bring somebody back to life at the expense of one of their own members.
It is during this story arc that Wally West and his family return to the present from their dimensional exile during Infinite Crisis.
While trying to put out a fire in a burning building Starman opens up a black hole in an attempt to snuff out all the oxygen, in doing so he opens a void to Earth-22 where Superman of that Earth comes through the portal to save Starman from the burning building. He warns them of the coming of a deity known as Gog who will lay waste to their Earth if he is not stopped. When the confused Superman is questioned he flies off to save a girl committing suicide after saving her the crowd begins to glorify him as Superman upsetting Power Girl who fly's off to Kal-L grave. After helping here defeat some thugs the current Judomaster is recruited, as well as Mr. America, Jakeem and Thunderbolt, and Lightning. Superman of Earth 22 passes the JLA
interrogations allowing him to tell more of his story and work alongside the team fighting crime. While investigating a murder Mr. America discoveries an emissary of Gog who attacks him leaving him near dead but still alive he warns the rest of the team. Earth 22 Superman pays a visit to Current Superman who reveals he had fought the pupil of Gog before and that he never thought him to be a threat. While discussing this downtown is attacked by Hercules who puts down Current Superman only for Earth 22 Superman to defeat with little to no effort at all proving that his longer duration in yellow sunlight has made him stronger.
But while this is happening Gog's pupil is bring the deity to Current DC Earth. Sandman goes to confront Gog's pupil only to be beaten severely and use him to teleport him to the Brownstone where he attacks which leads to a prolonged battle eventual ending up in Gog's temple where they defeat the Pupil and Gog is awoken and destroys his own pupil. Upon awakening Gog a giant Purple God begins proclaiming peace and begins a Trek across Africa granting miracles to the people of the countries. They all began to praise him as their god and follow and
worship him as he gives them food and water. Superman of Earth 22 still does not trust him The JSA keeps a 24 hour watch on him as he makes his Trek. He than begins granting miracles on the JSA. Such as repairing Damage's face, granting sight to Dr. Mid-Nite and Allowing Sandman sleep with no nightmares. He than appoints the JSA's newest member Lance the role as his new pupil Magog. But the team soon realizes Magog must be stopped when he turn the rebels attacking the villagers into trees. So they begin there assault and as they attack Gog takes away all their gifts and de-powers Magog. But the eventually do defeat Gog and still being alive Superman of Earth-22 flies him to the source wall and adds him to it and than using Starman returns back home.
Return of Black Adam
Upon revival Black Adam embarks on a campaign to reclaim his Throne and Wife Isis. But first he must save Isis from Felix Faust and than attack Billy Batson who is taken on the role of Lord Marvel at the Temple of the Rock of Eternity. Upon completing this he strips Billy of his power and takes the Throne at the Rock of eternity with Isis. Billy awakes the next day on the streets of Fawcett de-powered. His first move is he contacts the JSA and they mobilize to stop Black Adam. While this is going on Billy's
sister Mary joins up with Black Adam. Upon entrance to the Rock of Eternity Billy is quickly swept away by Isis who puts him in an endless maze he is followed by Jay and Stargirl. Stargirl stays on him while Jay gets lost in the mists around the maze. Billy and Stargirl are than confronted by Billy's sister Mary in the Maze. She quickly defeats Stargirl and than threatens to kill her unless Billy says Black Adam which he does in thus turning him evil. Jay while lost is found by Billy's father who was murdered by Black Adam so many years ago. Billy's father leads Jay to the rock of finality where The Wizard Shazam has laid dormant they awake Shazam to right the wrong that has been done.
The JSA's fight with Black Adam and Isis has been brought to Black Adam's Kingdom of Kahndaq where his subjects rejoice at the appearance of him. Just as the JSA begin to even the odds Billy and Mary show up fighting on Black Adam's side. The Adam's seem to be winning when suddenly Jay and The Wizard Shazam appear. Appalled by Black Adam and Isis and what they have done he strips them of their powers and turns them to stone. Than turns his attention to Billy and Mary who he strips their powers as well and sends them home to Fawcett City. Black Adam and Isis are left as statues as The JSA return to the Brownstone from this sad battle.
Attack At Home
Recently, the JSA has been experiencing some hard times. Coming home to find that Obsidian has covered the entire house in his shadow locking in Jay Garrick, Wildcat, Allan Scott, and Liberty Belle. Obsidian would not explain why he put the house in lock down other than a threat has occurred and is a "ghost". Stargirl from the outside of the Brownstone and Alan Scott from the inside are able to cast away Obsidian's shadows and the team regroups in the meeting hall as Obsidian fades away as this is
happening a strange purple mist washes over Jay, Alan Wildcat, Liberty Belle, and Hourman. He reveals himself as Kung a warrior of Japan from War World Two who fought Jay, Alan, and Ted in the war and was killed in Hiroshima and is acting revenge with his spirit. He than transports Jay, Ted, Alan, Liberty Belle, and Hourman to Hiroshima minutes before the bomb is to be dropped. While this is happening The Spectre has appeared back at the Brownestone and has picked up the rest of the team to stop Kung. Before the bomb is dropped Kung transports the team to a deserted beach where they wage in combat. Only to have it interrupted by Spectre who defeats and destroys Kung and than returns the JSA home.
One day, they mysteriously found a large black egg, which was revealed to be Obsidian. The Society, with new members All-American Kid, and King Chimera have little time to ponder over it, as they are soon attacked by a large group of villains, headed by Blue Moon. They attack them, while avoiding to fight Stargirl, who their boss had strictly ordered them not to attack. The All-American Kid and King Chimera stay behind in their room, which they share, until the Kid ominously walks up, goes to find Mr. Terrific, and stabs him. He then steals Obsidian and gives it to an unknown source. He is thought to be
dead, but is revived by the new Dr. Fate, who has now joined the team. The attacker was indirectly thought to be King Chimera, as he has mental illusion powers. It was revealed, however, that was the All American Kid, as he was actually the villain Kid Karnevil. The JSA continues to fight the group of villains, until they retreat. Hourman and Liberty Belle then decide that they can't work together as a team anymore, and they split up into two teams. Green Lantern and The Flash lead one team, while Power Girl and Magog rename their half of the team the JSA All-Stars. JSA base is in a cave and the All Stars are in Ricks dad's house. The Brownstone being destroyed in the battle the Team moves into an abandoned JLA base outside the City.
Not long after moving into their new base Dr. Fate has officially become a new member of the JSA. But upon his return bad tidings have followed. The Dark Sorcerer Mordru comes to the base in energy form and take possession of Fate's body and with begins plotting a take over of the JSA. But his strange behavior is enough for the team to know he is not Dr. Fate so they attack him and as Mordru leaves Fate's body Fate is left on the floor crippled and helpless to help his friends. Mordru being in his own physical form quickly cast an array of transportation spells casting each Society member into a pocket dimension hidden in a cardboard box.
Each dimension holds a personal hell for whichever member is in that particular box. He stores them away so he can fight and kill each member when he sees fit he first chooses Alan Scott and they wage battle in orbit above the Earth. But as Alan Scott and Mordru Battle Dr. Fate is able to muster up the strength to go and save his friends. He does so by reaching into each cardboard box and pulling them out. Back out in space Alan is able to bring Mordu out of orbit back to Earth where the JSA is waiting and together they defeat him and cast him into his own made pocket dimensions.
Return of The Fourth Reich and Destruction of The JSA
Twenty years in the future we see Mr. Terrific being interviewed by a woman in a dark room. She appears to be a doctor, and he is in prison clothes. It is revealed that the Neo Nazi Army and Fourth Reich have taken over the world and all superheroes are in concentration camps. She is interviewing Mr. Terrific to get his story on how The Fourth Reich defeated the JSA. Mr. Terrific has
a flashback to the day it all happened. As Liberty Belle is leaving her home she is attacked and defeated by Baroness Blitzkrieg. Then back at the base the rest of the JSA are interviewing Kid Karnevil, who is still in their detention. He keeps going on about how they will all die and that his team is on their way to the base now. They dismiss it as the rantings of a madman and go on with the interrogation. They get word that a strange package has been delivered. Alan goes to check it out, only for it to blow up in in his face, causing splintering wood to pierce every part of his body, killing him instantly. Then the Fourth Reich storm in and begin wrecking the place. Wildcat confronts Captain Nazi, who easily swats him away, killing him on impact. Than Mr. Terrific comes to Wildcat's aid and defeats Captain Nazi with the use of his T-Spheres. Wildcat's immortality returns him to life and they set out to check on the rest of the team. The JSA, working together, defeat all the Fourth Reich except Shadows of War, who reveals the Shadow Engine which was crafted from Obsidian's egg, instantly stripping them of their powers.
Then she ensnares them in her shadows and takes them away. Back in the future it is revealed that future versions of Superman, Batman, Green Arrow, and Dr. Mid-Nite are working with Mr. Terrific to find a way to go back in time and stop this from ever happening.
At S.T.A.R. labs in New York City,, upon receiving the body of Kal-L and Psycho Pirate from Superman and Superboy , Mr. Terrific begins to try and find a way to stop the Black Lanterns. The rest of the JSA are outside defending the lab and saving civilians from the monstrous horde. Mr. Terrific discovers he needs a strong light force so he asks for Alan, Lightning, and Stargirl for help. As well he needs the help of Dr. Fate, so using his super speed Jay Garrick rushes to Nevada to retrieve Dr. Fate.
Now with all four light energies in use Mr. Terrific begins crafting his device. But the JSA are all visited by their dead loved ones, including The original Mr. Terrific, Sandman, and Dr. Mid-Nite, who immediately engage in combat with the JSA heroes outside. As well Johnny Quick, Lois Lane of Earth 2, and Damage all show up as well but instead of attacking they speak as if they are on the side of the living. Lois goes to comfort Power Girl and says that she wants Power Girl to kill her at the side of her husband she does not
want to be a monster anymore. As well Johnny Quick goes to Liberty Belle and says he wants one last run with her and they take off as she turns to Jesse Quick. Damage approaches Judomaster and Atom Smasher in tears pleading to let him sacrifice himself to help them. Atom Smasher and Judomaster clear out all of the JSA members as Damage sets off a explosion decimating the city block, destroying S.TA.R. labs. However, everyone, and the device, is safe and protected by Alan Scott. Then they come to realize as the Black Lanterns begin to reform that they were set up and then Lois Lane of Earth 2 disconnects herself from her ring so it can go on Kal-L. Then with the walls and defenses of S.T.A.R. labs down the Black Lanterns begin to pour in. Kal-L attacks Power Girl and begins to play mind games with her. As this is going on Liberty Belle and her father are running around the world and heading back to New York City. Power Girl is losing badly to Kal-L and as the other members try to help they are tossed away like flies. After leaving Power Girl a bloody mess on the ground, Kal-L turns his attention to Mr. Terrific and his device.
Only needing seconds to complete the process, Alan Scott's shields are destroyed and he comes after Mr. Terrific and the League members inside. But just as he is about to destroy the device Power Girl crawls up and grabs his leg, holding him still and buying Mr. Terrific the time to ready and set off the device. The device sets off a blast wave of white light destroying every Black Lantern in the tristate. Liberty Belle leads her father back to New York City just in time to be hit by the blast. Cleaning themselves up, the JSA decide it is time to go help out in Coast City.
Monument Point and Becoming a True Justice Society
As the JSA begins to dwindle in numbers (Jesse Quick has defected to the Justice League of America), they are called in to defend the city of Monument Point from an attack by a super powered terrorist only known as Scythe. In the battle with the new villain, the Society ends up destroying the city due to the strength of this new adversary. Feeling responsible, Flash (Jay Garrick) vows the team will remain in Monument Point until the city is rebuilt and on it's feet again. Green Lantern (Alan Scott) is rendered paralyzed following this skirmish and hospitalized.
It is later revealed by United States Senator Eagen, an official that became involved following the mass destruction, that Garrick and Scott played a part in Scythe's creation. During a covert operation that the twosome were on in World War II, Scott and Garrick were charged with destroying a weapon. When this weapon turned out to be a child, they decided to let him live. This child would grow to become Scythe. Garrick, who has assumed de facto leadership of the depleted Justice Society, feels even more at fault and vows to turn Monument Point around. Freelance heroes such as Blue Devil arrive and help out with the rebuilding and protection of what remains of the city.
Corruption within the mayor's office seems evident as an official is seen meeting with another new villain whose codename is Dr. Chaos. Chaos lives up to his name by seemingly murder the mayor of Monument Point and Justice Society member Lightning without even fighting them physically. Dr. Fate saves Lightning's soul and the JSA All-Stars arrive as backup for the crumbling team. Green Lantern returns but still paralyzed and encased in a strange starheart suit. Scythe and Dr. Chaos are defeated and Flash is named mayor of Monument Point. It seems that the JSA has reunited with the JSA All-Stars and even picked up a few new members in the process.
An evil version of the Justice Society called the "Crime Lodge" was mentioned as an active team on the antimatter Earth. They were allies of the Crime Syndicate of Amerika.