2011–The 75th Anniversary of GWTW, the book, based in part on writings from the Mitchell family scrapbook, shown above.
THE BLOG THAT MIXES POP CULTURE
WITH GONE WITH THE WIND.
On any given day you never know when you will get the surprise of your life. Rhett Butler surprised Scarlett O’Hara with the green hat. When everyone else was skimping, Rhett brought back the beautiful hat from Paris– and boy did she like it! There are still Rhett Butlers out there surprising their Scarlett’s with wonderful gifts, and this story is a great way to start the year 2011 out. this particular Rhett was in West Virginia…
“My husband bought me a Gone with the Wind book from an antique store and I was so excited!” said Kelly Spaulding, the married mother of three.
She has been a collector and has had an interest in GWTW for quite a while, so it touched her heart that her husband bought her something so special. He could have just gotten her a bottle of random perfume or a scarf, but instead he went to an antique store in hopes of finding the perfect gift. Well he did. She started thumbing through the book and suddenly saw something he had not even noticed.
The “Gone With The Wind” book that Kelly Spaulding Got
“ The best part was looking through it and finding Fred Crane’s autograph! “ she said. “I was totally shocked! I couldn’t believe someone would just give up a book like this! I had tears in my eyes!”
Fred Crane’s autograph
Fred Crane is the actor who played Brent Tarleton, one of the Tarleton Twins, the brothers who were in the opening scene of the movie with Scarlett. (Their credits were mixed up in the movie, but Crane played Brent.)
Her gift did not end there. As she went through the book she got another surprise.
“I then noticed at the front of the book there was another autograph,” she said. “ I couldn’t make out the last name at first.”
So she looked closely at the words written on the page. The first letter started with a D and she started to shake. Could it really be?
“ The first name looked like ‘Daniel’ and the last name started with a S. I thought could this be David Selznick’s son? I googled Daniel Selznick’s name to see if there was such a person and found it to be true! I had a autograph of David O. Selznick’s son Daniel!I was so happy! I couldn’t believe it!”
Daniel Selznick’s autograph,
son of GWTW Producer David O. Selznick
Can you even imagine what she felt like getting a book autographed by Fred Crane AND Daniel Selznick–and her husband had not known they were in there? Selznick is not someone who is out there trying to get attention. He did produce a documentary about Gone With The Wind, but when I tried to interview him for my book he chose not to do the interview. He is not on the “GWTW” circuit like some of the living actors, authors, and others involved in Gone With The Wind.
Fred Crane, on the other hand was extremely nice and was happy to be interviewed for the book. Crane has since died so he will not be signing any more books, which makes it all the more special.
“I told my husband he really scored with this book as a Christmas gift!” Kelly Spaulding said. “He had no idea there was more to it than just a book!”
She wondered who had owned the book and why they put it in the antique store in West Virginia. Collecting is an interesting business. As the old saying goes, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasures.” Since writing The Making Of A Masterpiece, The True Story Of Margaret Mitchell’s Classic Novel, Gone With The Wind people who are cleaning out their closets and find an old Gone With The Wind treasure, have given it to me—just given it to me for free. “I know you will appreciate it,” they say.
One woman at a senior citizen facility at which I gave a speech told me she had four GWTW collectors’ item dolls that had never been taken out of the box. She wondered if I wanted it and of course I did. I’d love to hear from you if you have an item you acquired in a surprising way—or if you are just cleaning out your closet and want to get rid of any old GWTW items!
2011 is the 75th Anniversary of the publishing of Margaret Mitchell’s novel, Gone With The Wind. Interest in the book has never been higher. As the new year starts out two new websites have been added to the long list of Facebook pages, websites, and blogs. Denise Tucker has put together a “hub” website with lists of all of the Gone With The Wind internet presence at:
There are scads of Facebook pages including the various museums and outlets which either sell or display Gone With The Wind items like the Marietta GWTW Museum Scarlett On the Square
The Road To Tara Museum http://www.facebook.com/VisitClaytonCountyGA
The Margaret Mitchell House http://www.facebook.com/MargaretMitchellHouse
There are just other Facebook pages with various interests such as:
Vivien Leigh: http://www.facebook.com/vivienleighcom
Clark Gable: DearMr Gable.com
The Artist Joe Yakovetic has a web presence: Yakovetic’s Fan Club on Facebook.
And then there are general interest GWTW pages:
And this one has a blog…
They do interesting articles and sometimes have guest bloggers.
If you want to see a complete list of them go to Denise’s “hub” page. It’s hard to believe a book that was published 75 years ago still holds so much interest for so many people around the country, but if you look at these fan pages you will see it is still going strong.
There are people all over the world who are celebrating the year 2011 by reading Gone With The Wind. I just autographed a pile of books and sent them to a group of ladies in Lake Ozark, Missouri who plan to read and discuss my book along side Gone With The Wind. It was a lot of fun for me to write and while I was writing it I read Margaret Mitchell’s book three times (completely) and of course went back and forth looking things up many more times.
If you have my book you will enjoy reading Gone With The Wind and then looking things up in my book I have the “real-life” Civil War history behind the characters and storylines that Mitchell created. My research was validated when I was able to see the scrapbook, pictured at the top of this page, filled with pictures of Margaret Mitchell’s relatives from the 1800’s as well as stories told by a cousin of hers.
I am always looking for an interesting angle for this blog so please feel free to post comments or write to me at: info@GWTWbook.com.
Follow me on Facebook: GWTWbook.com
And check out my website: http://www.GWTWbook.com
By Sally Tippett Rains, author of The Making Of A Masterpiece, The True Story of Margaret Mitchell’s Classic Novel, Gone With The Wind. (www.GWTWbook.com)