Used Bookstores are my friend.

One can never have too many books. Until a recent promotion I was traveling for work all across the nation. While living in hotels and airports starts to wear on you, finding nice used bookstores in every town or city I visited kept me going. I was fortunate to find quite a few good deals, sometimes picking up regional or local histories that while common in their area I would be hard pressed to find these books in mine.

One of the most interesting bookstores I came across was  in General Mitchell Airport in Milwaukee Wisconsin. I purchased 10 civil war books that were very reasonable. Half of these books dealt with the famed Iron Brigade. The store is called Renaissance Books and I recommend them highly. The only problem I had with this transaction was making sure my luggage wasn’t overweight . haha

In Louisville Kentucky I came across a nice store called “A Book By It’s Cover”. Bought 20 books here and shipped them home to avoid any airline excessive weight charges. Here I purchased books that dealt with both Union and Confederate soldiers and units from Kentucky. I am sure this guy is praying I find my way back to Louisville and make another large purchase.

I also dealt with a used bookstore chain in several places called Half Price Books. They usually have great prices as well as a good selection.  I picked “Cutler’s Brigade at Gettysburg” by James McLean for about $10.00 with a coupon. This book has long been out of print and usually sells for over $100.00.

Nothing beats finding a rare book or one you have been looking for since the dawn of time at a great price. Please continue to patronize your local book dealers and say no to ebook readers.  While I appreciate many of the conviences of the digital age, I still love the smell and feel of an old book in my hands.

Published in: on June 6, 2014 at 7:13 am  Leave a Comment  

Why Books and not relics?

Many people over the years have assumed I collect civil war relics when I tell them about my civil war book collection. And I’m sure many book collectors collect relics as well. I just never had an interest in relic collecting. I do enjoy seeing relics in museums as well as civil war shows when I’m there buying books. I have always felt you are a bigger target for theft, I mean it’s kind of hard to move over 1500 books. Also you  have a lot of relics that are actually fakes, especially on eBay. Another thing is there are some great book dealers out there. Dealers I’ve enjoyed buying from are:

  Butternut & Blue, Broadfoot Publishing, Olde Soldier Books, First Corps Books, Camp Pope Bookshop, Morningside, Brandy Station Bookshelf, and countless Mom and Pop shops that you find surfing the web.

So while Border’s and Barnes & Noble look nice with their Coffee Bar’s, Beatnik’s, chess tournaments, clean restrooms, poetry readings…..give me an old fashioned bookshoppe that has nice used books at a cheap price and even better conversation from an owner who loves what he does.

Published in: on December 7, 2006 at 3:49 am  Leave a Comment  

Jones-Imboden Raid

Seems Christmas has come early this year.  Zouave and Eric from the Cwdg online website informed me that McFarland Publishing would be publishing a book by Darrell Collins on one of my favorite raids that recieves little attention. The Jones-Imboden raid, which began late April and lasted for almost 30 days, was designed to disrupt the B & O Railroad and to cut Telegraph communication.  In a two pronged attack, “Grumble” Jones and John Imboden road through Western Maryland and Western Virginia. The highlights of the raid were as follows:

Traveled over 700 miles, Fought two battles and several skirmishes, captured almost 700 prisoners( many were homeguards), procured 1000 head of cattle and 1200 horses, burned 150,000 barrels of oil in Oil City, 16 RailRoad bridges and a Tunnel, Two Trains of cars and several boats.

Cavalry units involved in the raid were some of the best the South had to offer: 1st Maryland Cavalry, 6th Virginia, 7th Virginia, 11th Virginia, 12th Virginia, 34th Virginia, 35th Virginia and McNeill’s Rangers rode with Jones. The 18th Virginia Cavalry, 19th Virginia, 22nd Virginia, 62nd Virginia Mounted Infantry rode with Imboden.

I’m patiently waiting for this one and wish Mr Collin’s good luck. Here is the link for those who may be interested in this neglected raid of the civil war.

Published in: on December 5, 2006 at 3:44 pm  Comments (4)  

Civil War Books

I first began collecting Civil War books 30 years ago and didn’t realize it. My mother bought me Robert Tanner’s “Stonewall in the Valley” in 1976 and after reading it I needed more books to satisfy my growing interest or addiction depending on how you look at it. My collection consists of about 1500 books that mostly deal with Confederate units or biographies. I also own a lot of Americana titles that are of Maryland or Delaware interest. Several years ago I sold off between 400-600 titles that were Union titles or dealt with battles. Many people have asked me why I did this, the last time was Eric Wittenberg at the CWDG Muster Dinner. I guess I came to realize that I really enjoyed reading about the Confederate experience and studying the war from that perspective.  Please don’t feel that I don’t appreciate what the Union Army accomplished, I just was tired of being a jack of all trades and a master of none when it came to the Civil War. I knew alot and knew nothing at all. I’m sure all of my Yankee friends will say I still know nothing by neglecting the Union side of the war. But what they don’t realize is that one of my Union titles probably ended up in their collection. But getting back to collecting books, nothing beats the rush of finding a title you been searching for turn up at your local used book store. I’ve bought books at yard sales, auctions, Civil War shows, eBay and God knows where else. Having all these books makes me look a lot smarter than I am. As my friends know, I give away Civil War books from time to time so they’ll have a good home. So the next time you have a Civil War book you no longer need, give it to friend or relative and let’s keep history alive especially the Civil War. Because the more people that start collecting Civil War books means more titles will be published which in turn will feed my addiction. Of course buying more books and “sneaking” them into the house is a whole other subject!

Published in: on November 16, 2006 at 5:04 am  Comments (2)