Wilmington, North Carolina, Authors Publish New Book
Wilmington, North Carolina December 04, 2013 Entertainment News(PRLEAP.COM) "MEET the Help: True Stories of Domestics," a new book by Rhonda Bellamy and Bertha Boykin Todd, has been released by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc.
"My last experience as a maid came in the late 1960s. I accompanied an attorney, his wife and two sons on their weeklong summer vacation at Pawley's Island. Until then the furthest I had traveled was to visit cousins in Columbia, 45 miles away. The closest I had come to a beach was a pond in a park reserved for blacks. My duties at the couple's beachfront cottage were to take their two sons swimming. We had changed into our swimsuits and headed into the water when my employer summoned me out of the water and told me that he had received several complaints about the colored girl in the bathing suit using the beach. I was made to go back to the house, put on shorts and a shirt, and stand on the shore as the two boys in my charge frolicked in the nearby surf."
-from "Mama Always Said" by Dr. Janie Canty-Mitchell as told to Rhonda Bellamy
"My favorite story that is forever etched in my memory is funny now but, at the time, was not funny at all. Ida Lee was traveling with us and we were driving to Wrightsville Beach to visit our grandparents. That morning, Mother and Ida Lee were busy packing our station wagon with clothes, toys, baby carriages, etc. for the trip. Our station wagon was loaded with all the "stuff "; children, Ida Lee, and Mom. Mother began driving. This was the era before car seats for babies and seat belts. Ida lee looked around and then looked at my mother. She exclaimed, "Where is the baby?"
-from "Ida Lee Harper - Our Second Mother" as told to Bertha Boykin Todd
About the Authors:
Rhonda Bellamy is a veteran journalist with 22 years experience in broadcast and print media. She is substitute host for "Byline: Wilmington," a public affairs show on local CBS affiliate WILM. She has recently been named interim executive director of a newly formed arts council to serve the greater Wilmington area. A co-founder of the Black Arts Alliance, Inc., Rhonda chairs the organization's signature North Carolina Black Film Festival. She presently serves on the board of trustees of Cameron Art Museum and the New Hanover County Library Foundation. A native of New York, Rhonda graduated from Wilmington's E.A. Laney High School and North Carolina Central University, where she holds a B.A. in English with a concentration in media/journalism and graduate credits in instructional media. MEET the Help is her third journalistic experience regarding books. She also edited Moving Forward Together: A Community Remembers 1898 and My Restless Journey, the memoirs of Bertha Boykin Todd.
Bertha Boykin Todd was a media specialist and school administrator for New Hanover County Public Schools for 39 years. She earned her undergraduate degree in biology and a master of library science degree from North Carolina Central University. She earned a master's degree and an Ed.S. in Administration and Supervision from East Carolina University. Bertha was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Her memoirs, My Restless Journey, were released in 2010.
"MEET the Help: True Stories of Domestics" is a 122-page paperback with a retail price of $12.00. The ISBN is 978-1-4349-3738-4. It was published by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. For more information, or to request a review copy, please go to our virtual pressroom at www.dorrancepressroom.com or our online bookstore at www.dorrancebookstore.com.