Who is the best-known cowboy? Of course, John Wayne! He was an American actor and director who went on to become one of the greatest stars in Hollywood in a career that lasted several decades. He played characters that typically exuded decisiveness, virility, and an American “can-do” spirit in over 75 films. And this famous actor was born on May 26, 1907!

We are sure that there are many facts about John Wayne that you haven’t known. Let’s check it.

Fact 1: John Wayne attended Glendale Union High School where he performed well in both sport and academics. Wayne was part of his high school’s football team and its debating team.

Fact 2: Due to his status as the highest-profile Republican star in Hollywood, wealthy Texas Republican Party backers asked Wayne to run for national office in 1968, as had his friend and fellow actor, Senator George Murphy. He declined, joking that he did not believe the public would seriously consider an actor in the White House.

Fact 3: Wayne was a Freemason, a Master Mason in Marion McDaniel Lodge No. 56 F&AM, in Tucson, Arizona. He became a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and later joined the Al Malaikah Shrine Temple in Los Angeles. He became a member of the York Rite.

Fact 4: Wayne‘s biographer Michael Munn chronicled John Wayne‘s drinking habits. According to Sam O’Steen’s memoir, Cut to the Chase, studio directors knew to shoot Wayne’s scenes before noon, because by afternoon he “was a mean drunk.”

Fact 5: The actor had been a chain smoker of cigarettes since young adulthood and was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1964. He underwent successful surgery to remove his entire left lung and four ribs.

Fact 6: John Wayne was fond of literature, his favorite authors being Charles Dickens, Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie. His favorite books were David Copperfield, and Conan Doyle‘s historical novels The White Company and Sir Nigel.

Did you enjoy our facts? Visit prabook.com to find even more!

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