John Wayne Birthplace

Winterset, Iowa

I have driven across Iowa millions of times (ok, a stretch, but you get the idea), but today (June 7), on a whim, I decided to turn off I-80 at Winterset and finally go see John Wayne's birthplace....

Winterset is 14 miles south of I-80 and is located in Madison County. (Have you heard of the novel "The Bridges of Madison County"? This is the Madison County the book refers to.) Madison County is quite picturesque. It is farm country, but the roads, especially the gravel roads, twist and turn through heavily wooded hills. Everything was green and lush.

The route to John Wayne's birthplace home was clearly marked; it was easy to find. As you can see, the home is quite modest. Wayne was born as Marion Robert Morrison on May 26, 1907. From this simple beginning he sure rose to the heights of fame and success.

Around the corner is the John Wayne Birthplace Museum. It is far larger than the home itself. Unfortunately, I arrived too late in the day to see the inside of the museum.

But now I can check off one more item on my bucket list - I've seen John Wayne's birthplace.