Fan Gallery Contents: Jack Speer


[photo by Chaz Boston Baden, Aug. 2003] Jack Speer

9 August 1920 - 28 June 2008

Albuquerque NM
Eofan, fanwriter, filker, fanhistorian.

FGoH: Westercon 14 (1961); NorWesCon 7 (1984); Noreascon 4 (2004 Worldcon).
Keynote Speaker and Don Ford Fund receipient: FanHistoriCon XI/ditto 14, Bloomington, IL (2001).
Pacificon (1946 Worldcon) attendee.

Past President of fwa, 1993.
First Fandom Hall of Fame 1995.

"John Bristol, Juffus, the Hily Magnified Woggle-Bug -- it's fitting that Jack Speer has had so many fannish names, because he played so many roles in the formation of fandom. Filker, costumer, apan, fanhistorian... he was among the first. Fandom would be a very different place today if it weren't for JFS.
      The term filksong wasn't invented for more than a decade after Speer first wrote new stfnal lyrics for popular songs and distributed them at Chicon I, the 1940 Worldcon. He and Milt Rothman also suggested the institution of the Costume Party at the first Chicon.
      An early FAPAn, and a member of the apa's fabled intellectual "Brain Trust," Speer invented the mailing comment in the third FAPA mailing, and twice revised the apa's constitution.
      Other Speer innovations include the quasi-quote mark and the interlineation. Where would fanzines be without linos? He also invented FooFoo, the ghod of mimeography, the fearsome foe of Ghu.
      In 1939, Speer wrote fandom's first history, Up to Now, spelling out his theory of Numbered Fandoms, which lasted up till the "Phony Seventh" in the 1950s, and is still used by many of today's fanhistorians to describe early fandom. In 1944, he codified much of fandom's jargon and institutions in the seminal FANCYCLOPEDIA, much of which is still in use today.
      At 80, Speer, a retired judge, is still pubbing his ish for FAPA, still attending cons, and still as fine a fan as ever. If fandom ever carves its own Mt. Rushmore, his is a head that deserves to be on it."

(Leah Smith) originally appeared in STET 9

Photo by Chaz Boston Baden, Aug. 2003
Data: Aug. 2014

Rev. 11-Aug-2014