The Queen of Porn: The Early Years of Jenna Jameson

Most people know her name, although admitting to it is an entirely different matter. Jenna Jameson has gone from being a victim of abuse and a no-name stripper to one of the world’s most famous porn stars, and it is not just because she is good at her job. Jameson flexed her entrepreneurial muscle to create a porn empire. What began as her own simple website has morphed into Club Jenna, a full-fledged adult entertainment company with revenues of more than $30 million. But while she may now be the fantasy of boys and men around the world, Jameson’s early years were anything but dreamy.

Jenna Marie Massoli was born on April 9, 1974 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Her mother was a Las Vegas showgirl who danced at the famous Tropicana Resort & Casino. Her father was a police officer and an NBC television program director. Her parents were happily married, but that happiness would not last long. Before the young Jameson had even turned two years old, her mother was diagnosed with skin cancer. The cancer treatments bankrupted the family before her mother finally passed away just before Jameson’s second birthday. Finding itself broke, the family began moving around, first living in a trailer park and later, moving in with grandparents.

Despite the tragedy, Jameson continued as best she could to live a normal life. She took ballet classes and used this as her talent in entering a number of different child beauty pageants. But misfortune would again strike Jameson’s life.

In 1990, the Massoli family moved to a cattle ranch in Fromberg, Montana. On one October day, Jameson found herself being beaten with rocks by four boys after a football game. They finally raped her. She kept the incident hidden from her father. But when she was 16 years old, it happened again. This time Jameson was allegedly raped by her then boyfriend’s uncle, a biker. Again, instead of telling her family, Jameson left her father and brother to move in with her boyfriend.

With few prospects, Jameson tried to follow in the shoes of her mother in becoming a Las Vegas showgirl. That dream was short-lived, however, when Jameson discovered that few shows would book her because she was less than the required height of 5 feet 9 inches. Upon her boyfriend’s prodding, Jameson turned to the world of stripping.

She may have been only 17 years old, but Jameson set out to find work as a stripper using a fake I.D. When the Crazy Horse Too strip club rejected her because of her braces, she went home that night, took a pair of needle-nosed pliers to her teeth, and removed the braces herself. The next day, Jameson went back to the club and was promptly hired. She was still in high school at the time, but Jameson was soon earning over $2,000 per night.

It was at that time that Jameson decided to abandon her family name Massoli and take up her current stage name. She chose Jameson after her favourite drink, Jameson Whiskey. The new Jenna Jameson was now not only stripping but also entering the world of heavy drugs and posing for nude photographs. When her boyfriend started cheating on her, Jameson decided to exact revenge. Little did she know that revenge would take her to new heights of success.

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