In November of 1955,John Dennis Fitzgeralds first novel Papa Married a Mormon fulfilled the promise to his mother. He had been writing his family's pioneer history for personal pleasure when his wife suggested it might make a great book. She was right. The story became an instant success. Publishers and readers wanted more; Fitzgerald happily obliged. By the end of his life, he had authored three adult books and eight children's books,all based on the little people his family knew who built the Utah west.
As an author Fitzgerald has been compared to Mark Twain or the male equivalent of Laura Ingalls Wilder. His literary gift for re creating the western town life he knew is delightful.
Over the years die hard fans have sought to learn more about Fitzgerald. Unfortunately, no websites
exist about his work. And only a few book reviews can be found at the library. Devoted fans want
more tangible answers. For many the best solution has been to travel to Fitzgeralds hometown.
Unfortunately the sought for answers are not obvious. This at times has discouraged fans. Fortunately,
the city library has a corner of collected items about his books, which does help, but much of the
backstory remains untold. It is this backstory that most fans want to experience. Were Papa and Mamma
truly in love, did Papa run the newspaper, what happened to the Great Brain,and more.
Nine years ago I began the research that told the story behind the stories. From the work I came to appreciate Fitzgerald and "the little people who built the West" even more. In the process I came to know the key characters more intimately as well as meeting left out characters who helped shape the stories. Best of all I met the Fitzgerald family, those from Utah and from Pennsylvania. Over these nine years I have looked for ways to share my findings with other readers, geneologists, and historians. This site is my answer thus far. I hope you enjoy it.
Welcome to Finding Fitzgerald.