Interest in Joan of Arc burgeoned in the late nineteenth century as she came to be seen as a symbol of the strength and determination of the French people. At the Paris Salon of 1889 Paul Dubois exhibited a plaster version of the equestrian bronze he had executed for Reims Cathedral. There is a full size replica of the statue in front of Saint-Augustin in Paris, and another one stands in Meridian Hill Park in Washington, D.C.

Fremiet initially specialized as an animalier, producing highly naturalistic bronze sculptures and statuettes of animals, but he is best known for his equestrian monuments, and especially the one depicting Joan of Arc riding into battle. He was commissioned to make a monument in 1872 for the Place des Pyramides in Paris where Joan was wounded. In 1899, he replaced the statue with a revised version. There are eight large statues besides the one in Paris: four in France, one in Melbourne, Australia, one in Portland, Oregon, and one in New Orleans. Fairmount Park in Philadelphia also has a Fremiet Joan of Arc. It may be an eighth copy, but a New York Times story of July 5, 1925 reported that it is the original statue from Paris, which Fremiet sent secretly to America, rather than melting down and recasting as he claimed. Numerous bronze statuettes, like the one in the Bryn Mawr collection, were made after the full-size statue to meet the demand of private art collectors.

Gaudez, who made his Salon debut in 1864, was a student of the sculptor François Jouffroy, who also trained Augustus Saint-Gaudens. His works varied in subject, from a bust of Pasteur, through classical figures, and patriotic groups. In this sculpture of Joan of Arc, the banner reads, "Dieu Patrie" - suggesting that his market for the sculpture was nationalist.