Not only is this clearly not John Wayne, it is just as clearly Gilbert Roland. In fact, Roland even signed his name to this photo, and yet I found it on an internet site where it was proudly proclaimed to be John Wayne.
This one was found on eBay where, for only $10.00 you can be the proud owner of a computer generated re-print of a movie still featuring John Wayne and Lana Turner. Of course, the problem is that this is not John Wayne and Lana Turner. They made only one film together, The Sea Chase (1955). This still is obviously from a film made in the 1930's, and it is just as obvious that it is not a photo of John Wayne and Lana Turner.
Another eBay find, this is allegedly an original photograph of John Wayne as a teenager, and only $125! What a deal! What a deal for the person who is lucky enough to sell this fraud, not so much for the poor fan who buys it! Not only is this photo not an original photograph from the 1910's (when John Wayne was a teenager), but it is also not a photo of John Wayne. This one has been floating around eBay and other online sales sites, as well as making the rounds on Pinterest and other websites, and each time it shows up, it is claimed to be John Wayne, however, it is not really John Wayne.
Here we have two examples of infant photos purported to be of John Wayne. Now bear in mind John Wayne was born May 26, 1907. Even a brief look at this first photo tells us that it obviously was not taken circa 1907-1908. It is obviously not John Wayne at any age! The second photo, however, is a bit harder to discern, especially with the name “Marion Morrison” handwritten across the bottom of the photo. There are, however, several issues with this photo that lead me to believe it is not John Wayne. To begin with, notice that only the infant is shown in the photo. Almost every vestige of the surrounding elements have been removed, thus making it more difficult to date the photo. Also, if you look at the baby's hand near the arm of the chair. Notice how small the baby's hand is. John Wayne was a large baby, weighing 13 pounds at birth, and he was always noted as having inordinately large hands. I would tend to think that at six months old, John Wayne was bigger than this child. The name written on the photo is also an issue. How many parents would write out their child's first and last name across the front of a photo? Not many, I'd wager. Perhaps the photo was taken by an aunt or uncle or grandparents.
Well, these folks have got this photo partly correct. It really is John Wayne in this photo. And, it really was taken on the set of Trouble Along The Way. However, the woman in the photo is not Chata (his second wife), and it is not actress Donna Reed. The woman is actually actress Marie Windsor, who also appeared in Trouble Along The Way as the ex-wife of Wayne's character. Windsor also appeared in several other films with John Wayne including The Fighting Kentuckian and Cahill U.S. Marshal.
I am saving this one for last. Yes, it is clearly a photograph of John Wayne in his Academy Award winning performance as Rooster Cogburn in True Grit (1969). The problem is not with the photo, but rather with the autograph below it. Not only is this a re-print of an autograph (as the item description clearly states), but it is a re-print of a forgery! The autograph is not authentic! Again, Caveat Emptor! Let The Buyer Beware! It has been stated that as many as 80%-95% of all autographs for sale on eBay are fakes. Something to bear in mind when shopping for collectibles on eBay.
Look for more articles about John Wayne collectibles that are forthcoming!