Welcome to this newest incarnation of our web site. We first established our presence on the Internet almost two decades ago, and for many years kept revising and improving our original site. Last year, we realized it was time for a real change, and we set out to give the site a completely new look. We will be adding many new items in the coming months, and hope that our new format will make browsing our stock and buying our books easier than ever before.
In 1981, after working in and managing other bookstores for several years, I returned to Schenectady from California to open my own bookshop. I named it Bibliomania - a madness for books - and began stocking the shelves with the best books I could find, used and new. It took a year or so to fill the store, but we gained a reputation for selling good books - customers said that even if they did not want a particular book, it was one that someone would buy, rather than just filling space.
For almost three decades, we sold fine books to collectors, institutions, and readers, adding maps, prints, photographs, autographs, and ephemera as time went on. We issued mail order catalogs right from the start, exhibited at a few northeastern book fairs every year, and set up a web site when the Internet was in its infancy. We always seemed to have more customers all over the country than among our local population.
As we entered the 21st century, we discovered that more and more of our business came from our web site. In 2008, we reluctantly made the decision to close the shop and concentrate on that aspect of the business. It was a hard but necessary choice, for we always enjoyed our customers as much as the books. Our motto from opening day was "where browsers are always welcome," and our store was usually busy. Many came by only a time or two each year while in town for the holidays. Once two neighbors from Buffalo, across the state, were surprised to meet in the shop. In the last years our store traffic decreased, a trend that happened to many bookshops in recent years, but we were determined to recreate the shop experience online.
It is not the same. We cannot replicate the fine conversations that took place, but the books, maps, autographs, and ephemera are here. Send us an e-mail, and we can answer any questions or send a scan or photo of the item. Not the same, but as close as we can get to bring the store experience to the Internet. An article about our shop in the Capital District Business Review once called us "the Internet done right" - we have our doubts when we struggle with computer glitches and other problems that arise, but we try to make your visit to our site as close as one can to being in a real book store.