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Jonathan Archer

Universe : Prime Timeline
Name : Jonathan Archer [1]
Species : Humans

Early Life

Jonathan Archer was born in upstate New York [2] to Henry [1] and Sally Archer. [3] Early in his life his family moved to San Francisco, where his father worked on the Warp 5 project. [1]

As a child Archer was an Eagle Scout, earning 26 merit badges. He travelled to the New Zealand rain forest to earn his wilderness badge. [4] Archer was a good student at school, and was only ever called to the principal's office on one occasion when he was caught passing notes to Katy Bentley. [5]

As a child Archer was close to his father, and the two build and flew model spacecraft together. [1] Before he attended flight school Archer consulted his father with his worries about failure, only to receive the blunt advice "don't fail." [6] Archer's father died of Clarke's disease when he was still young. Later in life Archer would support Earth's ban on genetics despite the fact that such technology might have cured his father. [7]

As a young man Archer gave serious thought to signing onto a cargo ship as a "boomer", but decided against it. [8]


Archer joined Starfleet and became a test pilot with the Warp 5 project in the early 2140s. He was highly competitive with the other three pilots, and was also highly sensitive to any criticism of the engine system which his father had a large role in designing. When AG Robinson criticised the engine after a failure led to the loss of one of the prototype vessels, the two came to blows. Archer first befriended Charles Tucker in 2143 when Tucker spoke up in defence of the engine design. Despite this the loss of the prototype threatened cancellation of the whole design, and Archer and Robinson stole the second prototype and used it to become the first Humans to achieve Warp 2.5. Their success saved the entire project, and further records quickly fell. [9]

Archer and Tucker would serve together again whilst training to become crew on the NX-01. Whilst on Omega training mission on Titan, Archer saved Tucker's life when his environmental suit malfunctioned. [10] Archer also had the opportunity to travel aboard the Yarahla, a Vulcan Maymora class vessel. He helped the ship's crew to set up a graviton telescope and had a chance to go into space in a Vulcan EV suit, an item he was highly impressed with. [11]

Archer was ultimately appointed Captain of the NX-01, a position he held until the ship was retired in 2161. [12] The ship was launched in April 2151, whilst still not fully ready, in order to return an injured Klingon, Klaang, to his homeworld. The mission was complicated by the intervention of the Suliban [1], introducing Archer to the Temporal Cold War in which he would become a significant player for the next three years. Despite the interference, Archer was able to return Klaang to his planet. [1]

Other notable achievements for the NX-01's next two years would include solving the Terra Nova mystery [13], making first contact with the Andorians [14], the Kreetassans [15], and the Axanar [16], preventing the Malurians from poisoning the Akaali home planet [17], assisting Terran freighters against Nausicaan pirates [18], assisting the sentient Dakalan life form in evading the Eska hunting parties which were slaughtering them [4], releasing a group of Suliban prisoners from a Tandarian internment camp [19], becoming the first ship's captain to visit Risa [20], and many other noteable events. [21]

During his first years in command Archer had several further encounters with the Klingon Empire. His crew discovered a Klingon vessel trapped within the atmosphere of a gas giant planet, its crew incapacitated as a result of ingesting a neurotoxin. The ship was eventually rescued and the crew saved, though they showed little gratitude. [22] In 2152 Archer helped a deuterium mining colony to defend itself from Klingon marauders who had been preying on them. Since the Klingons were not conducting officially sanctioned raids T'Pol reasoned that this was unlikely to further enrage the Empire. [23] When the NX-01 assisted a group of Rha'daran refugees fleeing a Klingon colony world Archer was challenged by Duras, a Klingon captain, and managed to disable his vessel. Archer was subsequently captured by the Klingons and put on trial on Narendra III. Although convicted and sentenced to labor in the dilithium mines on Rura Penthe, his crew managed to bribe the prison guards to release him. [24] This led to the Klingons placing a sizeable bounty on Archer, and the Tellarite bounty hunter Skalaar captured Archer in 2153. Archer managed to convince Skalaar to assist in his subsequent escape from Klingon custody. [25] Angry at their continued failure, the Empire assigned Duras to capture Archer directly. Fortunately the now upgraded NX-01 proved to be a match for Duras's Bird of Prey, and Archer destroyed the Klingon vessel whilst en route to his mission in the Delphic Expanse. [26]

Archer initially had a somewhat uneasy relationship with the Vulcans, whom he blamed for stifling Earth's research into warp travel. [1] When the Vulcans asked for the NX-01's assistance in retrieving their Ambassador to Mazar, Archer was glad to be the one in a position to offer help to them for a change. [27] He was intrigued to meet a group of "V'tosh ka'tur", Vulcans who believed they could live without the severe restrictions on emotion that are the norm for their species. Archer helped one of the group to re-open his relationship with his father, but was dismayed when their leader attacked T'Pol when his emotions overwhelmed him. [28] In 2151 Archer visited the ancient Vulcan monastery at P'Jem, inadvertently walking in on a group of Andorians who were raiding the site. They believed that the Vulcans were hiding an intelligence gathering post there, and were highly suspicious of Archer's presence as they viewed Humanity only as allies of the Vulcans. Archer eventually discovered that the sanctuary was indeed a front to hide a sensor system, and he revealed this information to the Andorians. The incident greatly embarrassed the Vulcans and marked the beginning of Archer's friendship with General Shran. [14] When Archer and T'Pol were taken hostage on a visit to Coridan Shran insisted on assisting in his rescue, even though this put him on the same side as a Vulcan team also trying to rescue the officers. [29] In 2152 Shran chose Archer as a neutral negotiator to assist in finding a peaceful settlement to the hostilities between Vulcan and Andorian forces on Paan Mokar/Wheytan. [30]

Despite his increasing confidence and ability, the Vulcans demanded the cancellation of Archer's mission in 2152 when the Enterprise apparently caused the destruction of a Paraagan mining colony. [31] Archer was able to find evidence that exonerated the crew, and with the help of T'Pol convinced Starfleet to allow the ship to continue its mission. [32] Ultimately, Archer's involvement in the Vulcan civil war gave him a pivotal role in changing the whole of Vulcan society. [33]

Another recurring problem for Archer was his repeated involvement with the temporal cold war. After having learned of its existence shortly after beginning his mission, Archer would discover that on of his own crew, Daniels, was in fact a temporal agent from the 31st century. Daniels was working to combat a 29th century faction which was controlling the Suliban. Silik boarded Enterprise to attempt to steal equipment from Daniels, but was foiled by Archer. [34] In late 2152 the NX-01 discovered a temporal vessel adrift in space. Examination of Daniels' records indicated that it was a 31st-century timeship, and Archer found himself fighting against the Tholians and Suliban to retain possession of the craft. Although the Tholians did eventually capture the ship, Archer was able to activate a communications system found aboard and the vessel vanished shortly afterwards, presumably being retrieved by its original owners. [35]

When an alien probe weapon attacked Earth in April 2153, the NX-01 was recalled from its mission. En route to Earth Captain Archer was abducted by the Suliban and introduced to their mysterious leader, a being who issued orders to them via a temporal communications device. Archer was informed that the attack on Earth was caused as part of the temporal cold war and that it had been initiated by the Xindi, a species originating in the Delphic Expanse. The Xindi planned a much more serious attack on Earth, one which would completely destroy the planet. Archer was able to confirm this information when quantum dating the wreckage of the weapon revealed some elements had come from centuries in the future.

The NX-01 was sent into the Expanse to contact the Xindi and prevent a further attack on Earth. [26]
The mission was a long and difficult one, a full year in which the ship battled various enemies whilst trying to survive the varied anomalies which littered the Expanse long enough to locate the elusive Xindi. Archer was finally able to contact Degra, the designer of the weapon project, and eventually convinced him that Earth was not an enemy of the Xindi. Together Degra and Archer built a base of support amongst the Xindi ruling council and convinced them to rethink their decision to destroy Earth. [21] Unfortunately two of the five members of the ruling council chose to steal the final version of the weapon and attack independently. [36] Archer was able to board and destroy the weapon moments before it fired on Earth. [37] In the aftermath of the battle the NX-01 found itself thrown over two centuries into Earth's past, where it found itself involved in an alternate version of the events of World War II. Yet another temporal cold war faction, the Na'kuhl, had become stranded on 1940s Earth and had interfered in the timeline in an attempt to build a time portal to return home. [2] Archer was able to destroy the portal, restoring the original timeline and ending at least a large section of the war. The NX-01 was returned to Earth orbit in its proper time and place. [38]

After the Xindi mission, Captain Archer began to play a far more active role in galactic politics. He and the NX-01 were able to intervene in the Vulcan civil war of 2154 [39], and Archer was a major driving force behind the multi-species alliance which was formed to deal with the drone weapon ships attempting to stir up conflict amongst various powers. [40] By the end of 2154 Archer's efforts had made Earth a significant focal point for inter-species co-operation, and a major conference was held on the planet. Although a group of Human terrorists threatened the conference by hijacking the Verteron array on Mars [41], the NX-01 was able to defeat them and restore order. [42]

Archer continued in command of the NX-01 until the ship was retired in 2161. On her final journey home to Earth he diverted the ship to Rigel X to help Shran recover his kidnapped daughter. Unfortunately the kidnappers were able to board the NX-01 afterwards, leading to the death of Commander Tucker. Archer completed the journey to Earth and attended the signing ceremony of the United Federation of Planets constitution. The speech he gave at the ceremony was considered to be one of history's great addresses, and was required learning for schoolchildren even centuries later. [12]

Archer continued in Starfleet for a further eight years, rising to Chief of Staff before retiring in 2169. After leaving Starfleet he became Ambassador to Andoria, a position he held for six years. He then served eight years as a Federation Councilman before leaving that post in 2183. In 2184 Archer rose to the post of President of the United Federation of Planets. He remained in the presidency for a further eight years, finally retiring in 2192. [43]

His many accomplishments made Archer one of the most famous names in Federation history. Historian John Gill referred to him as 'the greatest explorer of the 22nd Century', and he earned a list of commendations which included the Medal of Valor, the Star Cross, the Ribbon of Commendation and the Federation Citation of Honor. He was also appointed an honorary member of the Andorian Guard by General Thy'lek Shran in 2164. As of the 23rd century he was the only Human being who had two planets named after him; Archer IV in the 61 Ursae Majoris system was the first M-Class world to be explored by the NX-01 on her first mission of exploration. Although it was M-class, it was found to be uninhabitable as a result of pollen in the atmosphere which caused severe hallucinogenic effects on Humanoids. [43] In the 2190s [44] an antidote was discovered which neutralised the effects of the pollen and allowed colonisation to finally begin, and by the 2260s the population of Archer IV numbered almost three quarters of a billion. The second world, Archer's planet, is in the Gamma Trianguli sector. [43]

Archer retired to his birthplace in upstate New York. In 2245 he attended the christening ceremony of the first Federation Starship Enterprise, the NCC-1701. Jonathan Archer died peacefully in his sleep on the following day. [45]


Archer's most influential relationship was probably that with his father, Henry Archer. The two spent much time together when Archer was a child, and his father was a great role model for him. Unfortunately Henry died of Clarke's Disease when Jonathan was still a child. [7]

As an adult Archer's closest friend was Charles "Trip" Tucker. The two met in 2143, whilst Archer was a test pilot on the Warp 5 project, and became friends after Trip defended the design of the Warp 5 engine from criticism. [9] Other friends included AG Robinson(first flight) and several members of the Erickson family. [6]

Archer had a somewhat uneven relationship with T'Pol, his First Officer. He was initially highly distrustful of her, as he was of most Vulcans, and only reluctantly accepted her aboard his ship. [1] However, as her usefulness to his mission became clear his attitude softened and he offered her a permanent position. [1] Over time the two won one another's trust, and even became friends. [21] At one time Archer felt a romantic attraction towards T'Pol, but this did not last. [46]

Archer formed romantic attachments with various women during his life. At age 24 he met Margaret Mullin whilst in flight school, and asked her to marry him the night before he graduated. She declined, not wanting to become a "Starfleet widow." [47]He was involved with a woman named Caroline prior to 2143, and became very drunk the night she moved to New Berlin. [9] He also dated Starfleet officer Erika Hernandez during his time in Starfleet, but he ended the relationship when he was promoted above her, feeling that it was inappropriate to be involved with a junior officer. When he met Erika again in 2154 she had once again attained equal rank, and the two flirted with one another during a climbing trip. [48]

The Xindi agent, Rajiin, pretended to be interested in Archer after conning her way aboard the NX-01. He returned the attraction, but no relationship developed since Rajiin departed the ship shortly afterwards. [49] A similar situation occurred with Keyla, a woman Archer met on Risa who also turned out to be an intelligence agent, this time a Tandaran. [20]

When Archer was given three Orion slave women as part of a deal with an Orion trader, he fell under the influence of the powerful pheremones which the women naturally emitted. It is unclear how involved he became with Navaar, the leader of the group, but no significant relationship resulted since this attraction was once again part of a plot on her part. [50]

Hobbies / Interests

As a child Archer enjoyed building and flying model spacecraft with his father. [1] He also had a keen interest in astronomy, partly as a result of the book "The Cosmos A to Z", which he spent hours reading. [28] His interest in Starfleet was awoken when his father gave him a tour of the Warp Five Complex. [51] He was also interested in rock climbing [48], and kept a pet beagle, Porthos, whilst aboard the NX-01. [1]

Colour key

Canon source Backstage source Novel source DITL speculation

Associated with

Crew of the Enterprise NX-01

Played by

SeriesSeasonActorFilm / Episode Title
ENTScott Bakula
ENT1Marty DavisBroken Bow


# Series Season Source Comment
1 ENT 1 Broken Bow
2 ENT 4 Storm Front, Part I
3 ENT 4 In A Mirror, Darkly Seen on his onscreen biography
4 ENT 1 Rogue Planet
5 ENT 3 The Council
6 ENT 4 Daedalus
7 ENT 4 Cold Station 12
8 ENT 2 Horizon
9 ENT 2 First Flight
10 ENT 1 Strange New World
11 ENT 1 Breaking the Ice
12 ENT 4 These Are The Voyages...
13 ENT 1 Terra Nova
14 ENT 1 The Andorian Incident
15 ENT 1 Vox Sola
16 ENT 1 Fight or Flight
17 ENT 1 Civilization
18 ENT 1 Fortunate Son
19 ENT 1 Detained
20 ENT 1 Two Days and Two Nights
21 Various Enterprise episodes
22 ENT 1 Sleeping Dogs
23 ENT 2 Marauders
24 ENT 2 Judgment
25 ENT 2 Bounty
26 ENT 2 The Expanse
27 ENT 1 Fallen Hero
28 ENT 1 Fusion
29 ENT 1 Shadows of P'Jem
30 ENT 2 Cease Fire
31 ENT 1 Shockwave, Part 1
32 ENT 2 Shockwave, Part 2
33 ENT 4 Kir'Shara
34 ENT 1 Cold Front
35 ENT 2 Future Tense
36 ENT 3 Countdown
37 ENT 3 Zero Hour
38 ENT 4 Storm Front, Part 2
39 ENT 4 The Forge
40 ENT 4 United
41 ENT 4 Demons
42 ENT 4 Terra Prime
43 ENT 4 In A Mirror, Darkly Part II From his onscreen biography
44 Speculative The In a Mirror, Darkly biography actually says 2290s, but this is impossible as the Defiant was lost in 2268. I have arbitrarily assumed that the 22 should be a 21
45 Mike Sussman This was a part of Archer's biography unseen in the episode
46 ENT 2 A Night In Sickbay
47 ENT 3 Twilight
48 ENT 4 Home
49 ENT 3 Rajiin
50 ENT 4 Bound
51 ENT 2 Singularity
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Broken Bow
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Storm Front, Part I
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : In A Mirror, Darkly
Comment : Seen on his onscreen biography
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Rogue Planet
Series : ENT Season 3
Episode : The Council
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Daedalus
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Cold Station 12
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Horizon
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : First Flight
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Strange New World
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Breaking the Ice
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : These Are The Voyages...
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Terra Nova
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : The Andorian Incident
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Vox Sola
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Fight or Flight
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Civilization
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Fortunate Son
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Detained
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Two Days and Two Nights
Series : ENT Season
Episode : Various Enterprise episodes
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Sleeping Dogs
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Marauders
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Judgment
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Bounty
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : The Expanse
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Fallen Hero
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Fusion
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Shadows of P'Jem
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Cease Fire
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Shockwave, Part 1
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Shockwave, Part 2
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Kir'Shara
Series : ENT Season 1
Episode : Cold Front
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Future Tense
Series : ENT Season 3
Episode : Countdown
Series : ENT Season 3
Episode : Zero Hour
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Storm Front, Part 2
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : The Forge
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : United
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Demons
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Terra Prime
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : In A Mirror, Darkly Part II
Comment : From his onscreen biography
Source : Speculative
Comment : The In a Mirror, Darkly biography actually says 2290s, but this is impossible as the Defiant was lost in 2268. I have arbitrarily assumed that the 22 should be a 21
Source : Mike Sussman
Comment : This was a part of Archer's biography unseen in the episode
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : A Night In Sickbay
Series : ENT Season 3
Episode : Twilight
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Home
Series : ENT Season 3
Episode : Rajiin
Series : ENT Season 4
Episode : Bound
Series : ENT Season 2
Episode : Singularity

© Graham & Ian Kennedy Page views : 60,024 Last updated : 2 Apr 2014