Finding Aid for the Dawson's Book Shop Records, 1910-1950

Processed by Manuscripts Division staff; machine-readable finding aid created by Caroline Cubé
UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections
Manuscripts Division
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu
URL: http://www.library.ucla.edu/libraries/special/scweb/
© 1998
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Note

Arts and Humanities --Book Arts Social Sciences --Publishing Social Sciences --Business and Economics Geographical (By Place) --California --Los Angeles Area

Finding Aid for the Dawson's Book Shop Records, 1910-1950

Collection number: 117

UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections

Manuscripts Division



Los Angeles, CA

Contact Information

  • Manuscripts 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 Time)
  • Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu
  • URL: http://www.library.ucla.edu/libraries/special/scweb/
Processed by:
Manuscripts Division staff, 11 April 1990
Encoded by:
Caroline Cubé, 1999
Text converted and initial container list EAD tagging by:
Apex Data Services
Online finding aid edited by:
Josh Fiala, June 2002
© 1998 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

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
Repository: 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.
Language: English.

Administrative 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 Time)
  • Email: spec-coll@library.ucla.edu

Provenance/Source of Acquisition

  • Gift of Dawson's Book Shop, 1948.
  • Gift of Glen Dawson, 1951.
  • Gift of Glen & Muir Dawson, 1955.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Dawson's Book Shop Records (Collection 117). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

UCLA Catalog Record ID

UCLA Catalog Record ID: 964631 

Biography

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 shop.

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.

Indexing Terms

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, Muir.
Dawson's Book Shop--Archives.
Booksellers and bookselling--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources.

Related Material

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.

Container List

 

Personal Papers and Correspondence of the Ernest and Thomas Dawson Families

Box 1, Folder 1

E. Dawson family: personal notes and letters.

Box 1, Folder 2

E. Dawson family: business affairs.

Box 1, Folder 3

Thomas Dawson family: letters to E. Dawson from father, relatives.

Box 1, Folder 4

Personal notes, articles and ephemera saved by E. Dawson.

Box 1, Folder 5

Letters and articles relating to Christian Science.

 

Letters to Ernest Dawson

Box 2, Folder 1

Adams, Ansel.

Box 2, Folder 2

Adams, Virginia Best.

Box 2, Folder 3

Barrymore, John.

Box 2, Folder 4

Beaman, A.G.

Box 2, Folder 5

Belt, Elmer.

Box 2, Folder 6

Bender, Albert.

Box 2, Folder 7

Bevis, Dorothy.

Box 2, Folder 8

Bolton, Herbert E.

Box 2, Folder 9

Borg, Carl Oscar.

Box 2, Folder 10

Braun, C.F.

Box 2, Folder 11

Burnell, Elizabeth.

Box 2, Folder 12

California. University.

Box 2, Folder 13

Chase, J. Smeaton.

Box 2, Folder 14

Claremont Colleges.

Box 2, Folder 15

Clark, Lewis.

Box 2, Folder 16

Colby, William.

Box 2, Folder 17

Coolbrith, Ina.

Box 2, Folder 18

Cowan, Robert.

Box 2, Folder 19

Curtis, Leland.

Box 2, Folder 20

Drake, Dorothy.

Box 2, Folder 21

Doheny, E.L.

Box 2, Folder 22

Elder, Paul.

Box 2, Folder 23

Farquahr, Francis.

Box 2, Folder 24

Hatton, Thomas.

Box 2, Folder 25

Huber, Walter.

 

Letters to Ernest Dawson

Box 3, Folder 1

Foster, P.A.

Box 3, Folder 2

Foy, Mary.

Box 3, Folder 3

Goodspeed, Charles.

Box 3, Folder 4

Gottschalk, Paul.

Box 3, Folder 5

Grabhorn, Edwin.

Box 3, Folder 6

James, Harry.

Box 3, Folder 7

Kent, Rockwell.

Box 3, Folder 8

London, (Mrs.) Jack.

Box 3, Folder 9

Lummis, Charles F.

Box 3, Folder 10

Markham, Edwin.

Box 3, Folder 11

Marx, Octavia.

Box 3, Folder 12

Mills, Enos.

Box 3, Folder 13

Morley, Christopher.

Box 3, Folder 14

Newton, A. Edward.

Box 3, Folder 15

Parsons, Harriet.

Box 3, Folder 16

Rogers, Will Jr.

Box 3, Folder 17

Saunders, C.F.

Box 3, Folder 18

Swann, Arthur.

Box 3, Folder 19

Walpole, Hugh.

Box 3, Folder 20

Willard, C.D.

Box 3, Folder 21

Wright, Cedric.

 

Letters to Ernest Dawson

Note

--Arranged Chronologically
Box 4, Folder 1

pre-1910.

Box 4, Folder 2

1910-1919.

Box 4, Folder 3

1920-1929.

Box 4, Folder 4

1930-1939.

Box 4, Folder 5

1940-1949.

Box 5

Letters to and from the staff of Dawson's Book Shop.

Box 6

Letters and notes to the staff of Dawson's Book Shop from Ernest Dawson.

 

Business Correspondence, Articles and Other Material Relating to Dawson's

Box 7, Folder 1

1907 financial statement written by Ernest Dawson.

Box 7, Folder 2

Miscellaneous bills.

Box 7, Folder 3

Miscellaneous articles, business cards, pamphlets, etc.

Box 7, Folder 4

Business correspondence--arranged chronologically.

Box 7, Folder 5

Correspondence acknowledging Dawson's 25th anniversary.

Box 7, Folder 6

Letters regarding the book published by Dawson's, Migratory Birds; Their Haunts and Habits by W. Irving Way.

Box 7, Folder 7

Material regarding the American Booksellers Association and the International Association of Antiquarian Booksellers.

 

Materials Relating to Dawson's Book Shop

Box 8, Folder 1

Early ledger books.

Box 8, Folder 2

Note books.

 

Material by or about Ernest Dawson

Box 9, Folder 1

Notes for lectures given by Ernest Dawson.

Box 9, Folder 2

Articles and lecture notes written by Ernest Dawson.

Box 9, Folder 3

Articles about Ernest Dawson.

Box 9, Folder 4

Book about Ernest Dawson by Mary Dixon.

 

Letters of Travel Written by Ernest and Sadie Dawson

Box 10, Folder 1

1910-1919.

Box 10, Folder 2

1920-1929.

Box 11, Folder 1

1930-1939 (part one).

 

Letters of Travel Written by Ernest and Sadie Dawson

Box 12, Folder 1

1930-1939 (part two).

Box 12, Folder 2

1940-1949.

Box 13

Photographs of Dawson's Book Shop and the Dawson family.

 

Material Relating to the Sierra Club and Wilderness Activities

Box 14, Folder 1

Miscellaneous correspondence relating to wilderness activities.

Box 14, Folder 2

Ernest Dawson correspondence while president of the Sierra Club.

Box 14, Folder 3

Sierra Club material, miscellaneous.

Box 14, Folder 4

Ephemera, notes, photographs and correspondence relating to trips taken by Ernest Dawson with the Sierra Club.

 

Politics and Government

Box 15, Folder 1

Letters regarding Ernest Dawson and the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.

Box 15, Folder 2

Articles and correspondence dealing with politics.

 

Letters and Articles Relating to the VCA (Voluntary Co-operative Association, Los Angeles) and Related Periodicals

Box 16, Folder 1

VCA material.

Box 16, Folder 2

The Voluntary Cooperator, 1913. Magazine issues.

Box 16, Folder 3

New World, Los Angeles, 1913. Magazine issues.

 

State and National Parks

Box 17, Folder 1

Articles and correspondence relating to Ernest Dawson and the State Parks Commission.

Box 17, Folder 2

Articles and correspondence relating to Ernest Dawson and the Friends of the National Parks.

Box 18

Articles and correspondence concerning the Soviet Union.

Box 19

Articles, correspondence and lecture notes concerning the Soviet Union.

Box 20

Catalogs from Dawsons Book Shop, 1907-1950s(?).

Box 21

Miscellaneous catalogs and early book lists from Dawson's and issues of Publisher's Weekly, some with articles by Ernest Dawson.

Box 22

Cancelled checks, 1922.

Box 23

Invoices, miscellaneous bills, ca. 1930.

Box 24

Customer's file - invoices, ca. 1930.

Box 25

Bookplates, business cards and business stationery for Dawson's Book Shop and Ernest Dawson.

Box 36

Newton, A. Edward. The Amenities of Book-Collecting and Kindred Affections. Boston: Atlantic Monthly Press, c. 1920. 373pp. Inscription on front flyleaf from Ernest Dawson to Mr. Austin, Los Angeles, July 23, 1921.

 

Cash Ledgers

Box 44

December 1917-July 1930.

Box 45

August 1930-June 1936.

Box 50

July 1936-December 1939.

Box 46

Journal, December 1917-December 1938.

 

Merchandise Purchase Ledgers

Box 47

December 1917-December 1939.

Box 48

December 1917-December 1938.

Box 49

December 1932-December 1939.

 

Sales & Purchase Slip Records

Box 26

July 1929-March 1930.

Box 27

April 1930-January 1931.

Box 28

February-November 1931.

Box 29

December 1931-September 1932.

Box 30

October 1932-July 1933.

Box 31

August-November 1933.

Box 32

December 1933-July 1934.

Box 33

August 1934-March 1935.

Box 34

April-May 1935.

Box 35

June 1935-January 1936.

Box 36

February-October 1936.

Box 37

November 1936-June 1937.

Box 38

July 1937-March 1938.

Box 39

April 1938-March 1939.

Box 40

April-January 1939.

Box 41

February-September 1940.

Box 42

October 1940-April 1941.

Box 43

May-October 1941.