Leaving a good legacy for the future

Mike Smith with Nuremberg Trials transcript, a recent interesting find.

By Mike Smith


A legacy is “something you leave behind,” hopefully good, not bad. The truth is that we all will leave a legacy. Our goal and plan at A Book Legacy is to make it good! How about you?

Carol, my wife, and I began our journey together as teenage sweethearts in Alabama. For more than 40 years we have honored our commitment to one another and our family, due in large part, to the legacy our parents taught and left to us. Both sides taught us to work hard, have confidence in ourselves, help others, and honor God and country. (I know this sounds hokey to some, but it’s true!)

Carol’s dad, Roy McKinney, left us more than his Christian witness as a pastor. He left us 20,000+ books! A Book Legacy was born and we entered the fascinating world of books. For the past 20+ years we have bought, sold, and collected books. (Did I mention we bought books?) We tell folks we specialize in Americana, religion, genealogy, and military. Fact is, we are just like most book dealers and cannot pass up a good book value no matter the genre!

Book dealers are like football fans. (Roll Tide!) They are passionate about their team (genre), but love the sport (being a bibliophile and bookseller). Personally, my thrill is the “hunt”! I get excited when I can dig in boxes or scan bookshelves looking for odd, unusual, scarce, or rare looking books.

A recent interesting find for me is an original transcript of one of the Nuremberg Nazi Trials of 1946, inscribed and signed by the chief judge. (That is the one I am holding in the photo). Another prize is my signed copy of Gorbachev. I met the former General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union at a business seminar and he personally signed his book. The Russians think he is the one “who tore down the wall,” not Reagan. (Imagine that?) Once the “hunt” resulted in the purchase of a paperback book for 10 cents called “Bad Feet, Bad Back”. I sold it for $125 to a chiropractor in Australia.

Why am I a book dealer? (I am also a college professor.) Reasons are many and include the challenge, the intellectual stimulation, and most of all the FUN! (By the way, Thomas, Michelle, Matt, and Gevorg, we are not sure what you will do with the inventory. Who plans to carry the legacy forward?)

Please visit us at booth 82 during the FABA Book Fair March 9-11, 2012. But do not wait until then to peruse our inventory. Go to www.abooklegacy.com and browse. Before you leave the site, please use the link to our Facebook page and connect with us. Tell us what you think about our Web site and any suggestions you may have for how we can improve our Legacy!


About FABA Journal

FABA Journal is a magazine-style blog for book lovers highlighting the members of the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association and their activities, as well as general news about antique books, collecting, and related subjects.

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