27 October 2009

Abraham Lincoln Book Shop

I DID visit the Abraham Lincoln Book Shop in Chicago this past weekend. What a treat! What an a experience! I was like a excited little kid in a candy store. Lincoln and Civil War books stacked to the ceiling--and I wanted to see them all.

Sylvia of the Book Shop was there to show me around. She pointed out how the stacks were arranged: books on Lincoln's life, his lawyer days, his youth, the assassination, Civil War books, biographies, rare volumes, and a section with current publications. There were busts, portraits, autographs, and other collectibles for sale. Many of the books for sale were first editions--this isn't your typical neighborhood used-book store!

I roamed this small shop for several hours, just taking in the atmosphere, breathing in the history. For a historian and Lincoln-devotee like myself, this was an afternoon to remember.

I even purchased three books (two of them are 1st editions). This was the first time I have bought first-edition books. I wasn't sure if I was even supposed to read them. I didn't want to break something--I didn't want to wreck their value. But then I figured I would open them, enjoy that old-book smell, and read them anyway. I think Abe would have wanted it that way.

My purchases for the day:
John Duff, A. Lincoln: Prairie Lawyer (1960-1st edition)
William Hesseltine, Lincoln and the War Governors (1948-1st edition)
Lewis Lehrman, Lincoln at Peoria: The Turning Point (2008--just a regular book)


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