Marcus William Jamieson was born in Pennsylvania in July 1861, the son of Hugh A. Jamieson, a hardware dealer in Warren, Pennsylvania, and Julia F. Jamieson. He lived in Grinnell, Iowa, from 1877-1883, where he attended Iowa College (now Grinnell College), and later returned to Warren, where he was a bookkeeper and oil refiner. In the mid-1880s, Jamieson married Emily Crary ("Emma") of Webster City, Iowa. They had three children: Louis, Marcia, and Hugh. Marcus Jamieson died in 1928.
Charles Jamieson, Marcus's brother, attended Iowa College in the early 1890s and later lived in Grinnell, Iowa, with his wife Lilly.