Marilyn Monroe — Her Character, Personality, and Temperament.

You never hear people talk about the personality and character of Marilyn Monroe. So what was she really like?

Film posters (advertising) of Marilyn Monroe’s various films. Public Domain.

The Speedy Gonzales Biography of Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe was born Norma Jeanne Mortenson on June 1st, 1926 and she died, either accidentally or by suicide, on August 4, 1962. She was 36 years old when she passed — deemed probable suicide by the L.A. Coroner’s office. My initial personal opinion was that it was an accident, but the number of barbiturates taken (40), and a second investigation by the Los Angeles County District Attorney in 1982 ruled suicide for the second time.

Monroe grew up in orphanages and foster homes, as her mother was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia when she was eight years old, and she seldom saw her mother again. She had a brother who died when she was seven, and a half sister, Berniece Baker Miracle, who is still alive. Monroe never knew who her father was.

Monroe showed an aptitude as a writer during her school years and she contributed to the school newspaper. She decided early on that she wanted to be an actress as she loved movies and didn’t like the real world. When she was sixteen, her foster parents had to move state, and child protection laws prevented her from being removed from California. So she married her 21 year old neighbor, factory worker James Dougherty. Dougherty was deployed during the war years, and Marilyn was bored. She met a photographer while he was away, became a photographic model and signed with the Blue Book Model Agency in August, 1945.

Monroe was used mostly for men’s magazines and pin-ups, so as she was ambitious, hardworking and wanted more work — according to the agency boss — she died her head blonde. Within a year, she had appeared on 33 magazine covers, and within two years, she signed with an acting agency. It was at that time that she chose the stage name, Marilyn Monroe. She divorced her husband a few months later.

Monroe as a model in 1945 Public Domain Postcard