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"The History of Project"

The History of Edgar Rice Burroughs
Contributed by:
Jim Osborn
Resident of Nevada

Surprisingly, one name that almost always goes unmentioned when it comes to being a Sci-Fi Pioneer is Edgar Rice Burroughs. He is better know as the author of Tarzan of the Apes, but I believe his John Carter of Mars books were his most amazing achievement. 

Burroughs started writing his Mars novels around 1912. He constructed stories about space travel, long before it was even imaginable. He wrote stories about brain surgery long before anyone even thought that was conceivable. He wrote about the creation of life itself with his novel “The Synthetic Men of Mars”, without any scientific theory to back him up, just his unbelievable imagination and his mind's eye.

Burroughs subtly crossed color barriers in his Mars novels long before the turbulent fifties and sixties referring to the black race of Martians, “The First Born,” as a beautiful and noble race.

Being a southern gentleman at the turn of the century, it just wasn’t socially acceptable at that time to make such assertions. He was as bold and courageous as he was creative.

He stirred my imagination at an early age and jump started my artistic thinking. He made me really want to be a writer. I found the first book in his John Carter of Mars series, “ A Princess of Mars” in a Laundromat thirty years ago.

I couldn’t put it down. It inspired me and gave me creative direction and until this day that very same book still rests on my book shelf!

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