BackStory

Belle Brezing’s 150th Birthday Celebrated June 15, 2001 with Cheapside Ball

May 26, 2010

Tags: Belle Brezing, Belle Watling, Margaret Mitchell, Gone With the Wind, Sally Tippett Rains, Lexington KY

A Lexington, Ky., event is honoring the madam upon whom Margaret Mitchell modeled “Belle Watling” – and I’ll be there for all the fun, signing copies of my book, The Secret of the Belles, with my friend Sally Tippett Rains, who has her own Gone With the Wind- and Belle Brezing-related book: The Making Of A Masterpiece, The True Story of Margaret Mitchell’s Classic Novel, Gone With the Wind.

Kentucky’s most famous madam, Belle Brezing, is being feted at an informal party in Lexington’s Cheapside Park on Tuesday, June 15, that will include book signings, music by “The Jazz Visitors,” special appearance by “Belle and her girls” and “A Taste of Cheapside” provided by Lexington area restaurants. Tickets are $40 single, $75 couple. RSVP by Wednesday, June 9, to The Lexington History Museum, www.lexingtonhistorymuseum.org. I hope you’ll come if you’re in the area.

Belle’s Birthday Ball celebrates the infamous madam who ran an elaborate “bawdy house” in Lexington in the late 19th/early 20th century in Lexington. Both Sally and I recently wrote books related to Gone With the Wind and Belle Watling. My book, The Secret of the Belles, reveals a secret relating to Margaret Mitchell, actress Ona Munson who played Belle Watling and two young girls connected by a love of Gone With the Wind and a cache of decades-old letters – as well as a possible curse. Sally’s book, The Making Of A Masterpiece, The True Story of Margaret Mitchell’s Classic Novel, Gone With the Wind, includes an intriguing chapter on Brezing that parallels episodes from Brezing’s life with events involving Belle Watling in Mitchell’s novel.

The June 15 event will take place from 5-8 p.m. at the Fifth Third Bank Pavilion in Cheapside Park in downtown Lexington. In addition to the book signings, photo ops with “Belle and her girls,” entertainment and culinary tastes, Belle’s Birthday Ball will include a silent auction. All proceeds benefit The Lexington History Museum.

Make reservations for Belle Birthday Ball now by contacting The Lexington History Museum at 859-254-0530 or visit www.lexingtonhistorymuseum.org. Sally and I hope to see you there!