The Hang Fire Books Blog

The rantings of a bookdealer in Brooklyn, New York.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Douglas & Foulis: Edinburgh Booksellers

I found three layers of booktickets from "Douglas & Foulis, Booksellers & Librarians, 9 Castle Street, Edinburgh" pasted to the cover of My Lady Castlemaine: A Life of Barbara Villiers (Hutchinson, 1912).

(top to bottom = newest to oldest)

I found this info on the establishment at the National Library of Scotland website:
This catalogue of Douglas & Foulis' circulating library gives a fascinating glimpse of the rules of the library, its charges (for one guinea a year, a person could borrow one book a month; for ten guineas, 30 books a month), and what books it contained. Through the supplementary 'List of Books Added during 1913-1917', it also gives a rare insight into reading tastes and the circulation of books during the First World War. It is easy to find out what books were published during this period: here we can see that books such as 'Trench Pictures from France' and 'Russian Court Memoirs 1914-16' were easily accessible to Edinburgh readers with five shillings (the lowest subscription) to spare.
Not sure how long the library lasted but I believe this is the address today.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This business was still around in the 1940s and maybe 50s. My mother subscribed for as long as I can remember in a small rural town in SW Scotland where I was born in the 30s. The family was always excited when the Douglas and Foulis parcel arrived and mother loved her books. It's nice to see the label again...such memories!