Public Domain Super Heroes
John Carter, Warlord of Mars

Real Name

John Carter

First appearance

All Story Magazine (1912)

Original publisher

Frank Munsey

Created by

Edgar Rice Burroughs


John Carter was from Virginia and was a captain in the Confederate Armed Forces. After the war, his money and officer's commission was useless, so he set out to rebuild his life as a prospector in Arizona. He was chased by hostile Arizona natives into a lonely cave, where he was mysteriously transferred to the dying red planet of Barsoom, a fictionalized version of planet Mars. Barsoom is home to a myriad of different races of Martian, including the race to which Carter's wife Dejah Thoris belongs, as well as the green skinned, four armed race of which Tars Tarkas is a representative.

After aiding Helium in its battle against its ancient enemies in the city of Zodanga, Carter returned to Earth against his will. By the time he returned to Barsoom, Deja Thoris had given birth to his son, Carthoris. He then led the armies of Helium and Zodanga against Issus, and the "First Born" of Barsoom, in order to save his wife.

Powers and Abilities[]

On Barsoom, the lighter gravity makes John Carter much stronger than many of his foes, and he is capable of making tremendous leaps. John Carter is also 6'2" and in superlative physical condition. He is considered the greatest swordsman in two worlds, unwilling or unable, due to the simple facts of the matter, to acknowledge any other swordsman as his superior or even his equal. He is also a skilled rider and gunfighter. He eventually developed the common Barsoomian skill to communicate telepathically, but his mind could not be read by the natives of Barsoom.

Public Domain Literary Appearances[]

  • A Princess of Mars (1917)
  • The Gods of Mars (1918)
  • The Warlord of Mars (1919)
  • Thuvia, Maid of Mars (1920)
  • The Chessmen of Mars (1922)
  • Mastermind of Mars (1928)
  • A Fighting Man of Mars (1931)
  • Swords of Mars (1936)
  • Synthetic Men of Mars (1940)
  • John Carter and the Giant of Mars (1941)
  • Skeleton Men of Jupiter (1943)
  • Llana of Gathol (1948)

Public Domain Comic Appearances[]

  • The Funnies #30-56
  • Four Color Comics #375, #437, #488


  • Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. maintains ownership of the trademark for the John Carter name. See our FAQ for more info.

See Also[]