Rare Book Monthly

Articles - November - 2017 Issue

Used Bookstores Are Back: The Published Page - Large Bricks & Mortar Shop Opens Near Ft. Worth.


On Nov 1 Jim & Connye Hart, 72, are opening a large real used bookstore in Cleburne, Texas. When fully completed they expect to have over 100,000 books.

Move over Amazon, starting November 1st, Jim and Connye Hart open a big olden days style used bookstore in Cleburne, Texas outside of Fort Worth. When fully built out the Published Page expects to offer over 100,000 actual physical books. And talk about confidence, they are also buying a large two story 140-year-old building with nearly 10,000 sq. ft. of usable space to house the books!


The pair of 72-year-old booksellers, who live a few miles down the road in Arlington, started selling used books in 1997. First they were in a small antique center and later in a large regional mall, but rising rents forced them out of retail. By the early aughts they put the books in storage, put the business online and have been online as the Published Page ever since.


But with the Cleburne adventure, all that's about to change. According to Jim Hart, Cleburne is a small (pop. 30,000) old railway town about 30 miles down the road from Ft. Worth. In the past it has been bypassed by the highway system, but recently the Chisholm Trail Parkway (southern trail toll road) has opened, and apparently this route goes directly from Ft. Worth to somewhere near their front door. It takes about a half hour by car.


Earlier in the Fall the Harts announced their decision to their fellow Internet booksellers and since then they’ve been counting down the days to opening. Their Facebook page displays photos of the new premises - there’s Connye up on scaffolding painting the front facade, here comes the big moving vans, there are the shadowy figures physically moving their inventory in hundreds of boxes to the site, leaving little doubt that everything old is about to be new again.


The family has six children, none of whom, Jim said, has ever displayed the slightest interest in the trade before. But, he said, “they’re all pitching in to make this happen.”


Hart sees the November 1st date as a soft opening. He hopes to have at least a quarter of the floor space ready for occupancy and have enough books up on the shelves to make the shop a destination for book hungry buyers from the city and others in an area where used book stores, especially big ones, are sparse.


His plan is to begin on the ground floor and then continue building out the upstairs, which he describes as old style offices with antique lettering on the doors built around a traditional atrium. “I am an engineer,” he said, “so making the repairs, that part has been fun, but I’m ready to start selling books again."


Even though he's adding a huge new retail component, he expects to continue his internet business and feels confident that the numbers are going to pencil out, only now he’ll be paying a mortgage instead of storage fees.


The Published Page specialties include science fiction, petroleum geology, Civil War and American History. "Our average sale is about $12. We also sell inexpensive books for as little as $1.95," he said. “I like being in the book business and hate to see us price ourselves out of any market. I want our customers to be able to find something to buy and I want them to come back."


He also buys books, sometimes lots of books, and sometimes a few here or there. In the store he’ll buy either for cash or store credit, which should be a boon to those who have older books, paper or estate material and a dwindling number of places to sell them.


As for staff, Hart said, "Jim Arner, aka 'Gentleman Jim,' (a colleague in the Western trade) has volunteered to help for the first month, there are the kids, and we’ve had several qualified people express interest. The basic thought is, 'Let’s get it running.'”


Hart is an engineer by training, and although born in London to a Texas GI father and a British mother, his Texas roots go way back. When it comes to books, “I’ve been a reader and book collector all my life,” he said. “I was attracted to online book selling because I was writing computer software.”


Originally he thought he was going to be a “software guy” but after they bought their first really big lot of books, “it’s been more about books and less about engineering and consulting since then.” Presently the Published Page owns about 100,000 volumes of which about 40,000 are already cataloged and can be viewed online.


Asked why a septuagenarian couple takes on a six figure mortgage, he replied that they’d been scouting for a new location for several years and it “seemed better to have a hard asset (than a leased space). Given how old I am this is my retirement. If something happens it’s an asset for our children."


Hart isn’t sure if their new shop is the advance wave of a resurgence in large used book shops, with the smell of old paper and the long hours spent browsing through the shelves, but he did say, “I hope there will be booksellers around for a long time, and I hope to be one of them.”


Their new physical address is:


The Published Page

10 East Chambers St.

Cleburne, Texas 76031

Owners: Jim & Connye Hart (817) 349-6366



Facebook page: www.facebook.com/bibliotreasures/


The Published Page online



Store hours are expected to be Tues.-Sat. from 10-6, with other hours by appointment. He hopes to eventually be open seven days a week. The Published Page will participate in a town-wide celebration in Cleburne on Sunday, Nov. 5, but will not otherwise be open on Sundays.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 7. Ritter's unusual sun-dial world map, 1607. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 16. Fascinating Japanese satirical map published prior to WWII, 1932. Est. $1400 to $2000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 30. Newton's 2" miniature terrestrial globe, 1833. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 318. Braun & Hogenberg's first plan of Moscow in contemporary color, 1575. Est. $2750 to $3500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 346. One of the most decorative 18th century maps of Malta, 1680. Est. $1200 to $1500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 412. The first printed map devoted to the Pacific in full contemporary color, 1589. Est. $8000 to $10000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 425. Rare set of celebrated explorers of the New World, 1592. Est. $1900 to $2300
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 436. Two superb miniature atlases bound in one volume with 98 maps, 1682. Est. $5500 to $7500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 445. Part IV of de Bry's "Grand Voyages" by Girolamo Benzoni, 1613. Est. $2000 to $2500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 447. Tallis' "History of the United States of America" in six volumes, 1850. Est. $1500 to $1800
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 448. Mallet's miniature military masterpiece, 1672. Est. $1400 to $1700
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Malcolm X, Autograph Letter Signed, from prison, 1950. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Letter from Moses Walker, an enslaved Georgia man, to his mother at another plantation, 1854. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Signed cabinet card of Frederick Douglass, albumen photograph, Boston, circa 1879. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Placard from the Memphis Sanitation Worker's strike, 1968. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b><br><i>The North Star,</i> volume 1, issue 27, Rochester, NY, 1848. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Hand-tinted tintype of John Brown, circa 1860. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster signed & inscribed by Huey Newton, circa 1967. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Album of aerial views of the march on Montgomery, taken by federal troops, 1965. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster for the SNCC, photograph by Danny Lyon featuring John Lewis, circa 1962. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. $80,000 to $120,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. $200,000 to 300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. $80,000 to $120,000
  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Jenner (Rev. George Charles). <i>The Evidence at Large...Respecting Dr Jenner's Discovery of Vaccine Inoculation,</i> presentation copy from Edward Jenner to Rev. Rowland Hill, 1805. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Houdini (Harry).- Maggi (Girolamo). <i>De tintinnabulis liber postumus...de equuleo liber,</i> Harry Houdini's copy, Amsterdam, H. Wetstein, 1689. £600 to £800
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Meyer (Henry Leonard). Coloured Illustrations of British Birds, and their Eggs , 7 vol. in 2 plus Illustrations of British Birds, 4 vol., 1842-50 and [1835-51]. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Dickens (Charles). <i>An Entirely New Romantic Drama, in Three Acts, by Mr. Wilkie Collins, called The Frozen Deep,</i> 1857. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Lighthouses and Islands of Ireland, c. 125 drawings, 1867. £6,000 to £8,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Shelley (Lady Jane). Diary, 1853 & 1860. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Scottish Binding.- The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments, bound in contemporary brown polished calf decorated with the figure of a Chinese spearman, by ?James Scott of Edinburgh, 1778. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Greene (Graham). <i>The Man Within,</i> first edition, signed by the author, 1929. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Mellan (Claude, 1598-1688). The Holy Face, or the Veil of St Veronica, [c. 1649 and later]. £800 to £1,200
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    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Desaguliers (John Theophilus). <i>A Dissertation concerning Electricity,</i> W. Innys, and T. Longman, 1742. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Le Jeune (Paul). <i>Relation de se qui s'est passé en la Nouvelle France en l'anné 1636 enuoyée au R.Pere Provincial de la Compagnie de Iesus en la Province de France,</i> 1637. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Stumpf (Johann Rudolph). <i>Gemeiner loblicher Eydgnoschafft Stetten, Landen und Völckern Chronicwirdiger thaaten beschreibung, </i> Zurich, Froschauer, 1586. £3,000 to £4,000

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