Christopher P. Stephens, Bookman

Chris Stephens has been a book dealer since 1965 - earlier if you count childhood buying and selling.

Stephens has sold major collections to university libraries all over the world. He has operated appealing bookstores in Mt. Carroll, Illinois, Hastings on Hudson, NY and several in NYC, NY. He is a wholesale dealer to other bookstores all over the world.

Chris loves books.

Stephens now maintains a lively internet operation out of his new home in Scranton, PA.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Frank and Chris 1965

riverrun bookstore is the product two great bookmen.
Frank Scioscia opened the store on Washington Avenue in 1978. He ran it until he died in 1993. After a transition period, Frank's son-in-law, Christopher Stephens took over early in 1994.

Today their stints are even. Each man has steered riverrun for 15 years. The store is remarkable because of these men.

The men are very different and very much the same. Their styles and personalities differ. They are the same in their love of books. They read, but it's more than constant reading. Frank was an extremely knowledgeable bookman. Chris too.

The men were friends for 28 years. During that time they argued politics and applauded books. Their enterprises were separate.  They shared the joys of discussing incredible finds and showing one another treasures. Each was undaunted sifting through book rubbish for gems. Each was wildly optimistic about prospects of the next book call.

The picture was taken in January 1965, just after they met. Discussing points, book scouting, co-creating interesting collections, opening a series of bookstores culminating with riverrun - doing all this together was still in the future. That future was great.

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