A Look Back at James Dean in Fairmount

A Look Back at James Dean in Fairmount

     Updated 7 January 2008. URL is http://our.tentativetimes.net/dean/dean.html

James Dean’s Hometown, Fairmount Indiana

Here is the restored Winslow family 1949 Ford that Button Knight told me Jimmy Dean sometimes drove. In those days it was a proper Quaker gray, but it is now restored to a different original Ford color. WOW. Awesome! You will most likely get to see and photograph this car at the James Dean Run car show at the festival each September.

Adeline Mart Nall

Adeline Mart Nall died in Marion, Indiana on November 19, 1996. She was 90 years old and had said she looked forward to seeing Jimmy after she died. Survivors include one son, David Nall. Adeline Nall was James Dean’s first drama coach, his teacher in Fairmount High School.

Some of Our notes about her funeral are here and you can learn even more about Adeline Nall on another page.

But wait! See another viewpoint from Mr. Mattingly’s daughter, Tracy

Once you are near Bluffton, Indiana, there are many interesting sidetrips. South on I-69, take exit 55 and head west on State Road 5. Go five miles. You’ll come to Fairmount, Indiana, boyhood home of James Dean. Turn left at the light and go to the Gallery at 425 North Main Street. If I’m not there, everyone else will take good care of you.

The Fairmount Historical Society’s terrific James Dean Festival (actually called Museum Days) takes place on the last full weekend of September each year.

Read about this year’s festival in more detail!!

We longstanding Dean fans use Rebel, Rebel, the former James Dean Memorial Gallery as our home base. It’s at 425 North Main Street, Fairmount, Indiana, 46928. Phone (765) 948-3326. It even has a screening room with footage of screen tests and other rare James Dean moments. It’s open every day, 10 to 6, Indiana time.

Then on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the Fifties come alive again. This is truly a great event. It is immense, by Indiana standards. The James Dean Run, a huge car show rocks. [Call (317) 898-0522 or (317) 881-6668.] The fifties dance is unforgettable. There’s a street fair with carnival rides. See the James Dean Look-Alike Contest or enter it yourself. Don’t miss the awesome parade. Try to make this festival scene once in your life.

There is always a memorial service for James Dean, followed by a walk to the cemetery, on September 30, at 1:00 P.M. at Back Creek Friends Church.

More About Fairmount and Jimmy

Quiet times are nice times too, so anytime is good for visiting Fairmount. There is the James Dean Gallery (phone (765) 948-3326) as well as a charming Historical Society Museum [phone (765) 948-4555 ] which has lots of Jimmy Dean memorabilia, (and cool stuff about our legendary butcher Uncle, "Joe the Butch" and Aunt Elsie Haindl.) This town isn’t glitzy and flashy, not Planet Hollywood. It’s as down-to-earth as James Dean was.

James Dean grew up in Fairmount with his relations, Marcus Winslow’s family, after his mother died in California. (His dad was unable to raise him alone.) You can see the exterior of the farmhouse James Dean lived in and all his old hangouts.

The Winslow farmhouse where Jimmy grew up is on the page about changes in Fairmount.

Jimmy’s tombstone is at nearby Park cemetery. People from all over the world come to visit it, leaving a cigarette, flowers or a big red lipstick kiss on the granite. The word is that 50,000 people a year visit this headstone.

Downtown hasn’t changed since Dean walked the streets. You will feel transported to the fifties as you stroll. There are so many Dean and 50s places to see in Fairmount. Once there, you can pick up a little map that takes you to the gravesite, Carter’s motorcycle shop, Back Creek Friends Church, (the other) Friends Church, the Winslow farm, the James Dean Memorial Gallery, the Fairmount Historical Museum, old Fairmount High School, the James Dean Memorial Park, the antiques stores and even some of the nostalgia sites in nearby Marion, Indiana. One Marion treasure is the great 50’s restaurant, Yesterday’s Diner, a swinging 1950’s rock and roll cafe, with a 1997 great webpage.

The Fairmount High School alums sell bricks from the old high school for, if I remember correctly, $15.00. There is a pretty definite rumor that Bob Pulley, Dean’s classmate, may sell a Fairmount High School memory book with two James Dean signatures. Half the people you bump into will be delighted to tell you about James Dean. The other half wish the tourists would go away, but that’s typical everywhere, and they only feel that way during festival week.

James Dean: Race With Destiny

September 21, 1997: James Dean: Race With Destiny, at last. This movie premiered during the 1997 James Dean Festival. We went to a premiere week showing, and share some thoughts on the Race With Destiny movie page.

Our thanks to Nancy Jacoby and Trula Frank for much relevant information.

The Official Website Is CMG

This is my humble fan effort. For the totally official James Dean page, you must go to Marcus Winslow’s and CMG’s James Dean site

Many people write to ask my permission to use James Dean pictures. Unless I took the pictures, or unless I have a credit line on them for someone else, you would have to contact CMG about permissions.

19 July 1996: Associated Press reports, in today’s Fort Wayne Journal Gazette that a California World Wide Web site is being sued by CMG for using three copyrighted pictures of James Dean.

Y’all have asked me for more pictures. There are now pictures here by Kenneth Kendall

Here’s an account of the Second Day of Issue for the James Dean Stamp. You can still buy the framed, unique, (some hand-painted) postmarked items from local free-lance artist Mark K. Kinnaman) at Rebel Rebel in Fairmount.

Want to go back to the Contents listings?

Some of the newer pages:

  • Personal page about Kenneth Kendall
  • Bob Hinkle who taught dialogue and roping to Jimmy when he filmed Giant in Marfa, Texas.
  • Dean art by Marina Savik and other fans

This picture is from the museum of the works of Nicholas Roerich, an artist and writer who devoted his life to world peace. Perhaps Jimmy saw some of this art when he lived in New York City. I hope it brought comfort to him. (Permission to use picture granted in 1997.)

Contents of Our whole Dean Site now on its own page.

Here is the link to the Outrageous Index for Otto.

Here’s Otto’s Cover (Our Tentative Times)

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This page is written by just a James Dean fan, Sandra Weinhardt, email secop@parlorcity.com

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The contents of Otto (but not the links to outside resources of course) are ©copyright 1997-2008 by Sandra Weinhardt, all rights reserved, except where other ownership is noted.

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