By Judith Westlund Rosbe
In The Late Nineteenth Century, America's new railroads flooded Marion with extravagant cargo: the rich and famous. For the likes of Mark Twain, Henry James and President Grover Cleveland, whose home here was known as the "summer White House," Marion became a treasured sanctuary from city life. Teeming with prosperity and the blossoming arts, this hamlet offered a setting so breathtaking that it inspired some of the world's foremost creative minds. Encouraged by The Century Magazine editor Richard Watson Gilder, prominent artists, architects, writers and celebrities flocked to Marion. Also frequented by Academy Award-winning actress Ethel Barrymore, it was here that Charles Dana Gibson sketched his iconic "Gibson Girl." Whether following First Lady Frances Cleveland's trendsetting fashion or the well-publicized wedding of Cecil Clark and Richard Harding Davis, the eyes of America were firmly planted on Marion's sparkling shores and glittering guests.