John Wayne: The Genuine Article

John Wayne enthusiasts and culture seekers alike can now step inside the world of an American legend and get to know John Wayne the movie star, world traveler and family man at the new interactive installation, “JOHN WAYNE: The Genuine Article,” at Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville on view through January 1, 2018.

The exhibit, which debuted as part of Gaylord Opryland’s A Country Christmas celebration, takes visitors through the journey of John Wayne’s life with never-before-seen memorabilia, iconic film props, a behind-the-scenes glimpse into John Wayne’s private life and more.

JOHN WAYNE: The Genuine Article, based on the New York Times best-selling book of the same title, features six interactive rooms:

Inventing John Wayne: The first room will tell the story of how John Wayne got his start from his early childhood days to the creation of the persona that defined his character. Known for his walk, visitors can learn his “rolling gate,” as they listen to his legendary voice and learn the origins of his iconic style.

Western Man: The second room highlights what John Wayne is most remembered as, the authentic western man, and captures the spirit of the west with his film costumes, hats, belts, boots, guns, etc. Visitors will be able to try on his hat, beat John Wayne at quick-draw, view a timeline of his 84 Western movies and more.

Our Glorious Industry: Though a humble man, John Wayne was a Hollywood movie star. The third room dives into his role and legacy in filmmaking with a glimpse at original scripts, his nearly 200 feature films, correspondence with other famous Hollywood legends and industry awards including his Oscar.

John Wayne The Patriot: John Wayne loved his country and was a champion of American values both on and off the screen. In the fourth room, visitors can read letters from Presidents, see his Congressional Gold Medal and Presidential Medal of Freedom, and recognitions from various military branches, his uniforms from films and more.

For The Fans: Highlighting not only how beloved John Wayne was but also how much he loved his fans the fifth room will contain fan mail and correspondence, artwork, memorable stories and more. In this room, visitors can write a letter to John Wayne and post to the wall and take one of his famous “Good Luck” cards.

Family Moments: From the sunny beaches of Newport Beach, California to Wayne’s Arizona ranch, his boat The Wild Goose and film sets, John Wayne was a beloved family man. Visitors will see never-before-seen photos of his family life, treasured family objects and more.

Tickets are on sale now at and on-site at Gaylord Opryland Resort.

This exhibit will travel the U.S. and abroad. To be the first to find where the exhibition will go next, go to: and sign up on the email list.

Some quotes about the exhibit:

It is so exciting to see my father’s world come to life for the public to experience and enjoy. The holidays are always a special time for our family and Nashville is such a fun destination during the holiday season. We can’t wait to kick off the opening of the exhibit for families and friends to enjoy quality time together while learning about my father beyond his personas on screen in an interactive way. —Ethan Wayne

Went there on opening day. Wonderful and exciting. Ethan, Marisa, Patrick were there. So exciting to meet them. Worth a drive from anywhere. –Exhibit visitor

My wife and I were the first ones through the door and who do we see waiting to greet us? Ethan himself. Then Patrick and Marisa walk over. What a blessed day for us. Chatting and getting a few pics with these wonderful down to earth people. A big thank you to the Wayne family for bringing this exhibit to Nashville. Bless you all. –Exhibit visitor

Just a few John Wayne screen costumes on display in John Wayne Enterprises’ Genuine Article exhibit.
John Wayne’s granddaughter, Jennifer Wayne, and daughter, Marisa Wayne, admire John Wayne’s Academy Award for Best Actor in “True Grit.”


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