Scope and Content
Title: Dawson's Book Shop Records,
Date (inclusive): 1910-1950
Collection number: 117
Creator: Dawson's Book Shop
Extent: 43 boxes (21.5 linear ft.)
7 oversize boxes
University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Abstract: Ernest Dawson founded Dawson's Book Shop in Los Angeles, California, in 1905 at 713 South Broadway. Dawson specialized in
rare books and went on buying expeditions in Europe and at book auctions in Boston, Philadelphia, and New York. The store
also published small editions of books related to western America and the history of books. The collection consists of the
personal correspondence of the Ernest and Thomas Dawson families, and the business correspondence, catalogs, invoices, and
ledgers of Ernest, Glen, and Muir Dawson and Dawson's Book Shop.
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department
of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections. Literary rights, including
copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds
the copyright and pursue the
copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.
Restrictions on Access
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.
Additional Physical Form Available
A copy of the original version of this online finding aid is available at the UCLA Department of Special Collections for in-house
consultation and may be obtained for a fee. Please contact:
- Public Services Division
- UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections
- Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
- Box 951575
- Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
- Telephone: 310/825-4988 (10:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., Pacific
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Provenance/Source of Acquisition
- Gift of Dawson's Book Shop, 1948.
- Gift of Glen Dawson, 1951.
- Gift of Glen & Muir Dawson, 1955.
[Identification of item], Dawson's Book Shop Records (Collection 117). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young
Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.
Ernest Dawson founded Dawson's Book Shop in Los Angeles, California, in 1905 at 713 South Broadway; Dawson began the store
with a purchase of 2,250 books from the Salvation Army at 1 cent apiece, and immediately resold one of them, a book on Indian
basketry, for $ 2.50; issued first rare book catalog in 1907, and with its success, Dawson began to specialize in rare books;
the shop moved to 518 South Hill St. in 1908; Dawson made his first business trip to London in 1911, beginning a long series
of buying expeditions made by members of his staff; soon he was attending book auctions in Boston, Philadelphia, and New York
and conducting worldwide searches for collectors; the business moved to 627 South Grand Ave. in 1922, and to 550 South Figueroa
St. in 1952; while always dealing primarily in rare and second hand books, the business has published small editions of books
related to western America and the history of books; after Dawson's death in 1947, his sons Glen and Muir continued the book
Scope and Content
Collection consists of the personal correspondence of the Ernest and Thomas Dawson families, and the business correspondence,
catalogs, invoices, and ledgers of Ernest, Glen, and Muir Dawson and Dawson's Book Shop. Includes photographs of the Book
Shop and Dawson family. Also includes material related to particular areas of interest of the Dawsons: the Sierra Club, politics
and government, the Voluntary Co-operative Association (VCA) Los Angeles, and state and national parks.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Dawson, Ernest, 1882-1947.
Dawson, Thomas, 1848-1937(?).
Dawson, Glen, 1912- .
Dawson's Book Shop--Archives.
Booksellers and bookselling--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources.
The Way It Was: Fifty Years in the Southern California Book Trade [oral history transcript] / Louis Epstein, interviewee. UCLA Oral History Department interview, 1977. Available at Department
of Special Collections, UCLA.
California Booksellers Catalogues (Collection 933). Available at Department of Special Collections, UCLA.