Marion Morrison was the son of Clyde and Molly Morrison. The family lived in Brooklyn, IA, in 1909 and again from 1913 to 1914. Marion had been born a short distance away in Winterset, IA, on May 26, 1907. While the name Marion Morrison wouldn’t be recognizable for most people, the actor that he would grow up to be would be known the world round: John Wayne.
Marion’s father was a registered pharmacist who had been hired by the Rainsburg & Dillsaver Drug Store, which was located in the town of Brooklyn in the business district on Jackson Street. The family was only in the area for a short while when Clyde decided to buy a pharmacy in Earlham, leaving the town in January 1910.
In January 1913, the family returned to Brooklyn and took up residence at the house on 717 Jackson Street. In 1914, the family would finally move away from Brooklyn for good, but not before a fire erupted on the porch of the home due to sparks from a pot-bellied stove, burning many of the items that had been prepared for the move. The incident left a lasting impression on the six-year-old Marion.
The family moved to California, and the rest they say is history.
Historical Marker Inscription
Boyhood Home of John Wayne
The Clyde Morrison family moved from Winterset to this house in 1909 and lived here again in 1913-14. Mr Morrison was a pharmacist employed by the Rainsburg Drug Store, located near the south end of Jackson Street on the west side. His elder son, Marion, attended kindergarten at the Brooklyn Elementary School and entered first grade there in the fall of 1913.
When Mr Morrison was diagnosed with tuberculosis he moved his family to California in 1914. In later years the Morrison’s older son, Marion, became the legendary Hollywood actor known as John Wayne.
Location: 717 Jackson Street, Brooklyn, IA 52211
Coordinates: 41.735458 N, -92.445128 W