Preserving Black + LGBT History In Paris: Save Josephine Baker’s First Cabaret!

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TOMORROW I GO TO COURT! Please send me a small note, email or letter to (brianscottbagley@gmail.com) protesting against the thoughtless erasing of history, Black, American, French and LGBTQ, history once again!!!! I will present your collected support for saving this historic site to the judge tomorrow.

I have just learned that the place called “Chez Josephine Baker-Carrousel of Paris” at 40 rue Pierre Fontaine (Paris 9ème) is going to be sold officially on tomorrow, May 10th 2017 to owners who want to gut the establishment and turnout into a « BEER BAR ».

This historical place was the cabaret of Joséphine Baker since December 1926, where Josephine would relax and host her elegant quests of the 1920’s. It found a great success. There were guests and artists such as Jean Cocteau, Colette, Panama Al Brown, Charles Trenet, Bourvil, Edith Piaf Coccinelle, Bambi, Robert Desnos, René Clair and Georges Brassens … it is also a historic place for the Black as well as the LGBTQ community.

A place of culture, history, and memory for this great artist who fought for and was even decorated by France during the Second World War, and who has so very much sung of and promoted Paris, can not and must not completely disappear from the Parisian landscape. Josephine is still a strong symbol of the presence of strong ties between the United States and France.

We are therefore very worried about what could happen in the short and medium term on this site and we draw your attention to do your utmost to safeguard this element of French heritage which must not be delivered or sold to buyers who have no regard for it’s historical value who want to destroy a history that should be preserved!

Today, alas, this address and this cabaret, or even interior decorative elements, have not been classified or protected, the worst is therefore to be feared. I draw your attention with the utmost urgency to ask you to mobilize without waiting, all the means in your power to save this place of the Parisian culture. Josephine Baker, through her commitment to France throughout her life, deserves that this work be preserved with the help of all the institutional authorities as well as people who continue to love her today.

Thank you in advance for your support!

Brian Scott Bagley

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