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Biblio logo: Used, Rare and Collectible Books for Sale

Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

Watkins Glen, New York, USA

Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles specializes in Childrens, History, Medicine, Old And Used Books, Old Magazines, Religious/Spiritual, Sheet Music, Vintage Paperbacks.

About Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

MORE THAN 16,000 ITEMS OF OLD USED RARE BOOKS AND MAGAZINES. Selling old and used books, magazines, sheet music, post cards and other paper collectibles, also records, by mail order only. Books are in all conditions and prices. We deal in all dates including pre-1900, Children, Bibles, History, Religious, Fiction, Textbooks, Travel and Tourism, Cookbooks, How-to, Science Fiction. Almost any subject. Thousands in our on-line inventory and many more uninventoried in stock with more arriving every week. We maintain an active customer want list. Tell us your look-fors so we may be of help.

Biblio Member Since
2003

Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

2715 Ellison Road
Watkins Glen, NY 14891 USA
Phone: (607) 535-4470

Terms of sale for Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

Prior sale applies. All books are packed very carefully. International books are insured and we are not responsible for loss or damage unless sent priority mail which includes insurance. If book is not as described it can be returned with notification within 7 days after receiving it.

Payment Methods Accepted

  • Visa
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  • American Express
  • Discover
  • Paypal

Rare Books from Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

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Interview with Eileen M. Uribe of Seneca Valley Used Books & Paper Collectibles

When did you get started in bookselling?
Having an actual selling area did not happen until 1990 when we had a booth in a beautiful antique store that opened in an old movie theater. We were there for about a year when the opportunity of opening our own store became available. This little shop lasted about 2 years. It really was small so we had to sell only small items, of coouse, books and paper collectibles were a large part of that. After a year, we found ourselves repairing and refinishing anitique furniture almost full time so we closed and opened a woodworking shop on our property. Going to work was great as all we had to do was walk about 60 feet to our shop. Of course, customers thought they could stop by anytime. In 1998 we had to close our shop due to being sick from several things. My husband's allergies and COPD became really bad due to the walnut and mahogany dust and I also was getting sick from the strippers and stains I used. We had good venting in the shop but working there 24/7 became too much. So in August 1998 we opened our on-line book business making us one of the first on-line book dealers of the times.
What drew you to bookselling?
I have always loved books. Being born and raised on a farm on Long Island New York my only friends were found in the book I was reading. Since I lived within walking distance of my high school, I would spend many hours in its library. During 12th grade I had lots of library time available to me and I loved it.
Did you have any mentors in becoming a bookseller?
My mentor, without a doubt, was the librarian of my high school. From what I remember it was her first or nearly first job after graduating college and majoring in library. She taught me just about everything library related including how to run a library and how to appreciate its worth. I would take books home every afternoon and after finishing my homework, would read and finish each book I brought home so that I could get another one the next day. After graduating in 1963, I lost contact with her for so many years. However thanks to Facebook, I found her and we have been in touch since then. She was so very happy that I had not lost my love of books.
What are your specialties as a dealer?
Pre-1900 books give me the most pleasure of holding and turning the pages as I read it. However a business cannot be so specialized so we specialized in pre-1945 books of all kinds but especially childrens' books and pre-1950 Bibles. Since we bought in bulk at auctions we found ourselves with many many newer books. SO we included them also. After 17 years of business we still specialize in pre-1945 books, but our inventory includes just about everything. There are 2 types of books, however, that we will not carry and that is how to commit treason and pedophilia. We do not destroy them. We just keep them locked in the safe.
What's the most amazing book you've ever sold?
There are two amazing books that fall into this category. One wasa found in a wall of a house that was being renovated. That was a first edition of Uncle Tom's Cabin. The second one was found in a skid of books we bought at an auction.This wa s the Life and TImes of Scrooge McDuck. This book was in my husband's McDuck collection for several years before it was sold.
What is your favorite part of being a bookseller?
My favorite part of being a bookseller is being surprised of what is what people used as a bookmark. Only once did we find money. We have found hundreds of pressed flowers,book markers from hundreds of book stores, handwritten poems,etc. The most amazing was a page from a composition book folded many times and when opened contained the family tree of a Chicago family dating back to early America.
Do you have an open storefront or have you in the past?
We have been selling on-line only since 1998. However previously we did have a large area of a small antique store that contained books and paper collectibles. Postcards and other paper items were protected by plastic pages and set into many three ring binders. Larger paper items were matted and framed and hung on the walls. We had hundreds and hundreds of vintage postcards and each and every one were set 8 to a page leaving the backs available to read. Paper collectibles, especially the postcards, were our biggest seller because we took such good care of them and no one ever complained of the price we sold them for.
If so, do/did you have any bookstore pets?
The only bookstore pets we had were the completely hand sewn teddy bear shadow pillows, Momma Bunny and Pocket Baby AND Little House On The Prairie family dolls. Sometimes a customer would buy the one I was just finishing. Each shadow pillow was made from vintage dresses, Momma Bunny and Pocket Baby were of vintage muslin and all came with a Certificate of Authenticity and numbered along with their names. The Little House On The Family dolls were also of muslin that I dyed using coffee grounds, tea bags and the waters after washing red clothes and blue clothes separately.
What is the funniest / strangest / scariest thing that ever happened in your store?
The strangest thing that ever happened in the store is this. Watkins Glen NY was and still is a very popular tourist area and people from all around the wall come here. Our store had a lot of large windows that faced west and north. In the afternoon when the sun was beginning to set, the store across the street would cause the sunlight into several rays that would shine right into our shop. My husband made all the shelving for these windows using the least amount of wood allowed. With that, we would always have brightly colored glass in these windows. At about 4 every sunny day when these rays would stream into our store, these brightly colored glass items would cause a beautiful rainbow in a large area of the store. At this time every day several tourists, of which were mostly Oriental each with a camera hanging around their neck on a leather strap, would come into the store and stand in a horizontal line, bow to the window at the same time, and watch in awe the colors trhey would see. After these precious minutes were over, they would bow to us and walk out. As long as the sun was shining, this would happen every day.
What is your favorite bookshop (other than your own)?
I don't have a favorite bookshop. However when ever and where ever we go away, the local bookshop is always looked for. We love the smell of an old bookshop and who knows what treasure one can find there.
What do you personally like to read? Collect?
I personally like to read and collect pre-1945 childrens' books especially if they have a cat in it.After the war it seemed like the stories changed. Also, the illustrator can make or break the success of any book and it seems like the illustrations became too modern and the old-fashionedess of these illustrations disappeared. My husband collecdts carved elephants and childrens' stories about them
What's your favorite book you personally own? Would you sell it, if the price were right?
Right now I have a very sweet children's book entitled My Little Pussy.Nowadays, that title would never be accepted. I don't know if I would ever sell that.
What one book would you buy if price were no object?
There is no one book that I am looking for but rather the subject matter it contained. Of course, that would be a children's story if one of the characters were a cat or dag. I also seek out pre-1950 books that show how to make wooden crafts and toys.
If you were stranded on a desert island and could bring three books, what would they be?
Interesting question. I guess I would bring any vintage Mother Earth News pre-1980 magazine, any blank paper book where I could draw what I see and want to do to exist and last but not least,a vintage Bible.