The Final Arthur H. Clark Catalogue (To Be Continued)
By Michael Stillman
Recently arrived in our mailbox was the final, sort of, catalogue in the long-running series from the Arthur H. Clark Company. Going back over a century, Arthur Clark long has been both a bookseller and book publisher. However, after all of these years as a family run business, the publishing arm of the Arthur H. Clark Company was recently sold to the University of Oklahoma Press. Third generation owner Robert Clark reports that he will be moving to Oklahoma to direct the publishing company that will still carry the family name.
For those not familiar with Arthur H. Clark Publishing, first of all, you are either not particularly up on Western Americana, or you have been missing out on something special the past 100 years. Clark has been a regular publisher of historical western books, including both new insights on old events, discoveries of unpublished histories, and reprints of older works. Many of Clark's publications, particularly the older ones, have become very collectible. You will find them not only in Clark catalogues, but many others as well.
However, that brings us to the question of what will happen to Clark's bookselling division. The good news is that it will continue. With the University of Oklahoma Press taking over the Arthur H. Clark name, the catalogues will no longer bear this imprint. The catalogues will now appear under the name Clark Rare Books. The latest, number 929, is a transition, so it bears both the old and new names.
At the moment, the Clarks are in the process of moving to Norman, Oklahoma. Once settled, Mr. Clark will be managing operations for the press during the day. However, the Clarks will continue to run the bookstore from their new location. Bob Clark will be available evenings while Sheila Clark will be running the show during the day. However, for the remainder of the year, keeping track of all of the books will be a bit of a challenge. Books must be moved all the way from their Spokane, Washington, location to the new one in Norman. Therefore, they caution it may take longer than usual to ship books, perhaps even a few weeks. Nevertheless, the business will remain open, and you can check their website for instructions on contacting the Clarks or placing orders. The site may be found at www.ahclark.com. Now, here are a few selections from the last Arthur H. Clark Company catalogue, or the first one from Clark Rare Books.