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    My name is David Hamilton; I have owned Americana Books since 1993. I offer for sale all categories of books and specialize in selling antiquarian books relating to American History.
    My passion for old books began at an early age. As a young child I used to play in my fathers Lutheran Church library and thumbed pages of his large leather Bible that sat on the altar. As a kid in the 1960’s, I would explore my grandparent’s abandoned Minnesota farm house that was built shortly after the Civil War. Grandfather moved my mother and the rest of the family to a new farm house in the 1940s. When they moved they left behind books, newspapers, magazines, and other ephemera in the old house.

    With only the cracks of daylight showing through the broken window panes, I learned the look, touch and smell of old books. Many of the old books were from the 1800’s, some in German and some with my ancestors name and dates inside. From a child’s perspective it was fun to imagine my ancestors reading and studying these books with no electricity and no television.
    During High School in the 1970’s I had a habit of skipping lunch to read in the library, and in College I would go to the library and find a secluded area with the oldest books and study. I excelled in history in College but realized career opportunities were limited.  I settled for a career in Public Health. My dormant interest in books was soon to be revived. In 1991, near my Decatur office. Virginia Velleca of Books and Cases erected a “Buck a Book” sign in front of her Hawthorne Village antique shop. I bought hundreds of books from her sale. I continued to buy old books whenever and wherever I could find them in Atlanta and in my travels around the United States. Money and space were soon in short supply. To support my book buying habits, I needed to sell books to make space and money.
    In 1993 I obtained a business license, leased a space in Hawthorne Village Antique store and opened a booth selling books at the old Lakewood Fairgrounds. Working full time, setting up at antique shows and book fairs, and traveling was taking its toll on mind and body. My wife Leslie has been very supportive of the book business. But it was necessary to find an even balance between work, personal life and the book business. It was time to slow down. After Lakewood Antiques market closed in 2004, I did fewer shows and traveled less.
    The slower pace was short lived. I was becoming restless and needed a new challenge. In 2007 George Hoak, owner of Memorable Books in Stone Mountain, decided it was time to sell his inventory of books. Selling was a very tough decision for Georg. For those who know George and visited his shop in Stone Mountain, know that he could find almost any book in the thousands of books piled from the floor to the ceiling in his shop. Together, Ken Mallory (Ken Mallory, Bookseller) and I purchased George’s inventory. It took several months of back-breaking labor to sort through the numerous stacks of boxes, shelves, cabinets and storage units full of George’s books. Business was not good after George sold his business, and in 2008 Memorable Books closed.
    From 2009 to the present, Leslie and I have been listing the inventory of Americana books on ABE Books, Amazon and on Biblio internet sites. Occasionally, I set up at book fairs. With retirement on the horizon I will ponder the idea of running an open book store. With recent changes in book publishing, technology and the economy, it is uncertain what the bookselling trade will look like in the future. I believe there will always be a market for customers who love to read, collect and build their own libraries. Dealers too are good customers, always buying and supporting business. For hundreds of years great books have been written, printed, read and collected. Customers and dealers alike will always be searching for those historic, classic and modern books that stoke their imagination and their desire to connect with the past.





Featured Member

Smythe Books

Jim Strawn is the classic example of a person taking a passion – in his case a penchant for collecting books – and turning it into a business in retirement.  In October, 2006, Jim, then age 65 and a former finance chief in the radio industry, along with his wife, Judy, opened their own store, Smythe Books, in Dunwoody, Georgia.

Are you an established antiquarian bookseller in Georgia? Find out how to be a member...

GABA Officers

Libby Ware
Toadlily Books

Dan Read
Blue Train Books

Charlene Ball

David Hamilton
Americana Books, ABAA

Frank Walsh
Yesteryear Book Shop, Inc, ABAA

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