Author Archives: Alice

What were they thinking?

  Occasionally, a book comes along that just makes you go “Huh?” I’ve got one like that now. It is the German language Praktisches Kochbuch für die Deutschen in Amerika, (second American edition) by Henriette Davidis, published circa 1897 by Geo. Brumder … Continue reading

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Never mock a Minoc! (It hurts their feelings)

What do the Field Museum of Natural History and I have in common? We both own a copy of The Natural History of the Minocki of the Lakeland Region of Wisconsin, by Professor Richard C. Schneider (self published, 1980). I … Continue reading

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Strange bedfellows, or Everything old is new again

I always have my eye out for unusual books about Milwaukee history, and History of the Social Democratic Party of Milwaukee: 1897-1910 by Marvin Wachman (University of Illinois Press, Urban, Illinois, 1945) seemed to fit the bill. I don’t have … Continue reading

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On saying good-bye to my books

No doubt all booksellers come to a point when they reconsider their business models. If the model has been working well, it may be tweaked. If it hasn’t, it may be drastically modified or even abandoned. I find myself at that stage now, … Continue reading

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Autumn Meditation – a poem in terza rima form

I’ve been wanting for years to capture the way I feel when I look at autumn foliage, and I’ve finally approached it with an old rhyme form: terza rima. Dante used it to write The Divine Comedy, and much latter, … Continue reading

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On the things we leave in books

The odd looking illustration for this article is an index card I found in one of my book purchases. Some frugal bookseller made the front and back of a single index card do for four books, with an equally efficient swirl … Continue reading

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The merchant spam detector

A book seller, just like anyone else with an email address, gets lots of spam. While we can be as skeptical as the next guy (or gal), we often have an added reluctance to discount an email addressed to the business because … Continue reading

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On the Delights of Obsession

One thing most booksellers learn early on is that specificity sells. It may not sell quickly, but when you have something that’s so detailed and esoteric that ninety-nine percent of the population couldn’t care less, that remaining one percent will … Continue reading

Posted in Book collecting, Book selling, Wisconsin history | 1 Comment

Training vs Breaking – An old teaching a dog book

Practical Dog Training; or Training vs. Breaking, by S.T. Hammond. (New York: Forest and Stream. 1892.) I can’t remember exactly when I bought this little book — probably 35 years ago. I do remember where I bought it: at the Renaissance … Continue reading

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What ever happened to St. Matthews?

Just over one hundered and two years ago, the community of St. Matthews Evangelical Lutheran church published a booklet commemorating their newly built church and its consecration on December 19, 1909. The church was located on the corner of 10th … Continue reading

Posted in Books in German, Genealogy, Milwaukee history | 2 Comments