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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
 

From the Vault

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Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Thomas Paine

January 29 is the birthday of early American political activist Thomas Paine (1737), whose pamphlet Common Sense (1776) credited with inspiring American colonists to embrace the idea of independence from Great Britain. The American Revolution had already started but the work served to spur volunteers for the Continental Army. It was widely distributed throughout the colonies, read aloud in taverns, and unabashedly pirated. Some scholars say it was the first American bestseller.
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Article

Books about Books: A History of Oak Knoll Press, Part 6: Paul Wakeman Dives In!

On a side note, I was becoming very active in the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America (ABAA), first serving on the Board in 1982 and then becoming Chair of their Finance Committee in 1989 and Treasurer in 1990. Millie and I enjoyed the international congresses that the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) conducted and began to attend them in 1990, starting with the Tokyo Congress. This event led to many contacts in publishing that eventually paid dividends, proving yet again that the cross-over between the antiquarian book world and the publishing world is a very healthy relationship.
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Booksellers

Living With - And From - Books, Part 3

I worked as a book dealer for 30 years, while my father takes pride in his 60 years-long experience; it's a long time but doubtless a time well spent. During all these years we've been honoured meeting so many extraordinary people: bibliophiles, librarians and, above all, colleagues with whom we shared ideas, insights and of course culture. The exchange of views with fellow book dealers from all over the world has been an irreplaceable resource in doing our job, and doing it with the most passionate attitude. Besides the economic incentive, we cannot help but consider the intellectual profile involved in the book dealing as a truly gratifying reward.
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ILAB History

1971-1980

Established in 1966, the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of Canada (ABAC) or Association de la Librairie Ancienne du Canada (ALAC) became an ILAB member at the Paris Presidents’ Meeting in 1970. Australia followed eight years later. The Australian and New Zealand Association of Antiquarian Booksellers (ANZAAB), created in 1977, belongs to the League since 1978.
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Booksellers

Rummage in Curzon Street

Off to Mayfair again today to take a look at two rather different bookshops perched either side of Curzon Street. On the south side, at no. 46, is the retail showroom of Shepherds, incorporating of course the famous old Sangorski & Sutcliffe bookbinding business. As you might expect, all the emphasis is on fine bindings – new and not so new. Rob Shepherd, incidentally doing a fine job as the new ABA treasurer, and his colleague Kim Pooley, bemoan the fact that the stock is looking a little thin – they simply sold so many books in the run-up to Christmas and the bindery is already at full stretch. Nice problems to have, in a sense, but there are plans to move a lot of the gorgeous stationery, bookbinding accessories and so on, over to their new premises in Gillingham Street at Victoria and to concentrate on books here in Curzon Street.
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Article

Frank Hurley 1885-1962

Frank (James Francis) Hurley was an Australian photographer and film maker, and "one of the great Antarctic photographers of all time" (Michael Rosove). He joined Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition 1911-1914, the British, the Australian and New Zealand Antarctic Research Expedition 1929-1931, he travelled with Ernest Shackleton to the Polar Regions and made films in Papua. Michael Treloar recounts the life of the artist and the adventurer.
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