When German Chancellor Adolf Hitler acquired a powerful mystic weapon known as the Spear of Destiny, he intended on manipulating its power to dominate all of Europe and thusly began World War II. Informed of Hitler's intentions by a British officer, American president Franklin Delano Roosevelt selected two "Mystery Men" (The Flash (Jay Garrick) and Green Lantern (Alan Scott)) to use as civilian agents against the German army.
Perceiving an imminent Nazi invasion of England, the sorceror Doctor Fate enlisted the aid of other Mystery Men; the Atom, Hawkman, Hourman and the Spectre, and embarked to assist the Flash and Green Lantern on England's shores.
Recognizing that American involvement in Europe was inevitable, President Roosevelt suggested that the heroes should marshal their forces into a cohesive fighting unit aimed at protecting America's home front. Thus, they became known as the Justice Society of America.
In 1951, a special inquest convened and the JSA appeared before the House of Un-American Activities Commission demanding that the JSA members reveal their secret identities to the general public. Unwilling to reveal their true faces, the Justice Society instead elected to disband.
Reforming some time after the first formation of the Justice League of America, the JSA became locked in a time loop with the Norse gods, which they had to sustain in order to keep the universe alive.
Several years later, the Spectre transported the Justice Society team out of Asgard to contend with a new threat.
Following another brief disbanding, the JSA reformed again now as caretakers of the superhero legacy, helping to teach and guide younger heroes from one generation to the next.
- The Justice Society of America was the first ever superhero team to appear in comic books. First appearing in All Star Comics #3 (Winter, 1940).
- By December, 1941, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour, the JSA functioned as an extended arm of the All-Star Squadron; a massive assemblage of super-heroes dedicated towards preserving the ideals of democracy.
- The Wonder Woman which fought in World War II alongside the JSA was not Diana Prince, but her mother, Hippolyta; who had briefly acquired her daughter's mantle and time traveled to the period to serve as a hero.
- The first Red Tornado from the 1940's, a woman named Ma Hunkel, acts as the caretaker of the JSA's primary headquarters in Manhattan.