Serving readers since 1989!
Serving readers since 1989!
My family has resided in Albany for four generations, yet after high school, I fled the city. I discovered Dove & Hudson a few years later. My first purchase was Peter Gay’s biography of Freud, whose sale Dan recorded on 5” x 8” lined paper topped with the D&H stamp. My hunger for and comfort with books led me to a job at the Harvard Coop Bookstore. Serving that demanding audience provided a priceless education about the book business. It also heightened my appreciation for Dan’s talent. He created a superior shop, based on a model that sold the books I adored at unfathomably low prices. His customers became his friends. He built a gorgeous space. I treasured the beautiful bookcases Dan designed, the wooden grates covering the heating ducts, and the idea of a Belles Lettres section. His memory of his customer’s tastes—incredible. More than once he reminded me I purchased a Thomas Bernhard novel already on a previous trip, and purple money! It’s an honor and responsibility to continue the traditions Dan established. No need to worry, Dan will continue to work at the store to satisfy customers and teach me. I look forward to meeting you all and helping you find all the books you’re eager to read. - Joseph Nathan
I opened D&H on Dec 10th 1989. My previous 20 years were spent in the new book business. During the first 10 I worked in 5 retail bookstores: NYC, San Francisco, CA, Williamstown, Ma, & Washington DC. I worked my way up to positions such as, buyer and manager. For the next 10 years I was a publishers' representative, selling books to bookstores throughout the Northeast. Traveling had its rewards, but had obvious drawbacks for a homebody like me. Having one's own bookstore is the dream of a great number of people in the business. My experience taught me that new bookstores lacking considerable capital are unlikely to succeed. Used book stores can be built up by investing time to find inexpensive books rather than dollars. For several years while still repping I built up and stored an initial stock for a store, which was informed by my experience. When I came into a modest inheritance I was able to buy 296 Hudson Ave, renovate the store space, and open Dove & Hudson. I chose Albany in part because my DC experience had taught me that government workers are often discerning book buyers. The concentration of colleges also encouraged the choice. In 30 years there has never been an open day without books being sold. I have long described D&H as being like a new bookstore with a strange source of supply. In addition to stock acquired from the public, I have always gone looking for books from other used book stores, from publisher overstock sources, and from charitable book sales. What I chose to stock attracted customers, but more importantly, the customers taught me what to choose. Dove & Hudson is entirely a collaborative effort with the thousands of people who have bought books there over the years. In 2019 the store turned 30 and I turned 70. I didn't want to retire, but did want to slow down. I consider myself very lucky to have found, in Joseph, such a worthy, enthusiastic, and capable successor. I look forward to continue working in the store and seeing all of the old friends that it has brought me. I am grateful to think of the store going on long after I'm gone. - Dan Wedge