A 48 year old scholar from southern Indiana, John was too old to carry a gun but too patriotic to sit at home and read about the Great War in 1917. As he sought a way to do his part, he discovered that the YMCA was launching a pioneer program to provide lectures for the Doughboys. John leapt at the opportunity and was soon in France.
Joan of Arc was his favorite subject; a most appropriate selection, here in the country of her birth, her triumphs and the ultimate tragedy. Not only did he thrill the troops with his vivid and passionate tale of her life, he simultaneously studied at the very places of her exploits to keep his lectures fresh and exciting. Domremy, Tours, Orleans, Rheims and Rouen was the hallowed ground for his research and inspiration between lectures.
The war ended but he remained in France to study her life and set foot on every foot of ground that she trod. After much soul searching he determined that the form of his essay should be that of Epic Poetry. And thus began a 35 year labor of love. When questioned regarding his motive for writing this historically factual Epic Poem, he replied: "I sought to pluck so precious a literary jewel from the dusty pages of history and place it, if I could, into the fine art of poetry."
At the end of this long period of gestation, John could not find a publisher. He then asked his grandson, Richard for help. A promise was made and after another long period, a team of first cousins finally brought this beautiful work to light. We are proud to present the results of a true labor of love!