Although many have poo-poohed the film Blaze as historically inaccurate and over dramatized, Blaze Starr and Louisiana Governor Earl Long did have an affair.
They were both married at the time. He, happily to Miz Blanche, the iconic First Lady of the Pelican State, and she to a club owner, Carroll Glorioso.
Of course, she was in the middle of a divorce when they met, so, I guess that made it better.
In Louisiana, Uncle Earl could do no wrong. The shoe polish salesman turned politician ran the state for years and earned the name Uncle Earl because he had so many relatives running for office and working for him.
He also wound UP in a mental hospital.
A little of that was Blaze Starr’s fault.
Miz Blanche had had enough, and along with her powerful friends, the old boy wound UP in the nut house in Mandeville, LA. Of course, he was still governor, so he just wrangled a way out. Louisiana politics – a different animal.
The ‘devoutly’ Baptist Governor met Blaze Starr when she was working at the Sho-Bar in Nawlins.
Earl had a state full of strippers at his beck and call, and according to one source, Bill Dodd, he wasn’t in love with any of them. But, his affair with Blaze did last longer than any other.
Crowd workers of the highest degree, Blaze kept the men coming back to her shows with burlesque gimmicks like a couch that burst into flames when she sat on it, and a panther trained to untie her robe at the right moment, and Earl kept the voters on his side.
They were both showmen.
Earl worked crowds by handing out bags of food to the poor and making promises everyone believed and he knew he couldn’t keep.
Starr was already famous when they met, and along with Tempest Storm may have been the most well known stripper of the late 40s and early 50s.
Her 38DD-24-37 figure and gyrations kept the eyes of horny Baltimore Boys glued to her.
When the Ungovernable Governor (as Life Magazine called him) met the Sexy Stripper sparks flew. And Miz Blanche got pissed!
After his tirade over voter registration in the Louisiana House – he was against it – and his destructive rampage in his own Governor’s office – well, he landed in the loony bin.
But, he pulled some strings – fired the administrator and appointed a friend – and was released.
Blaze, a West Virginia girl, left home at 14, wound UP in Washington, DC, and started stripping. Her manager, Red Snyder tried to rape her, so she split…to nearby Baltimore, where she became a headliner, had her own revue, appeared in men’s magazines, had a ‘spread’ in Esquire, and went on tour.
One stop was Nawlins.
The rest is history. Earl and Blaze ‘saw each other’ until the end of his life in 1960. She soldiered on for a while,but she finally hung Up her G-string in 1985 at the age of 53!!!
When Earl died in 1960, Blaze summed it UP this way, “I felt lost without Earl and for a while had little desire to take up with another man.” He left her $50,000 in his will, which she refused to accept.
Miss Starr, 81, lives in Maryland and makes hand made jewelry. You can check out her website by clicking HERE.
In many interviews after the movie Blaze was released, Blaze spoke lovingly of Earl Long. Their relationship, scandalous as it was, was apparently, a real love affair, and one that Blazed!