People are sometimes curious about Smith Family Bookstore’s history in this community. The store opened in 1974 when Delbert and Misa Smith rented a small space on Alder Street near the University of Oregon with a few boxes of books for sale and mostly empty shelves on the walls. From 1974 to 1976, Smith Family Bookstore filled the small Alder Street shop with used books, and the store was busy with students and other people buying and selling textbooks and good used books. In 1977, the Smiths bought an empty lot on East 13th, and built a new building for their growing used book business. In the mid-1980s, the Smiths purchased the vacant Eagle’s lodge on Willamette Street, and over the next two decades, developed this historic building into a second downtown location.
Smith Family Bookstore began with two simple ideas: book stores should be welcome places for all kinds of readers and good used books should be affordable. In September 2019, we closed our campus location and moved its inventory into our newly expanded store on Willamette Street. Our consolidated bookstore continues to offer over 500,000 used and new books in hundreds of subjects.
Both old and new book-selling ways work well at Smith Family Bookstore. We are committed to the printed book and bookstore jobs for people (not warehouse robots). Our experienced staff uses knowledge, information, and footwork to find the books people are searching for or to recommend sections to browse in our stores. We believe bookstores are important community resources, and we work hard to keep our store filled with good books at fair prices. We also sell books to readers and collectors all over the world through our online listings on Abebooks.com, and we respect the ways technology has opened the global marketplace to our small, local business.
Smith Family Bookstore buys and sells all kinds of books, and every reader is welcome to browse through our stacks. We think of ourselves as a bookstore for everyone, and our inventory supports this identity. We continue to work hard to remain relevant and competitive in this age of increasingly consolidated online book selling. Our bookstores offer interesting choices, good prices, and are a reflection of our open-minded, diverse community. If you live here or are just visiting, give yourself time to explore Smith Family Bookstore. If you live far away and need help finding a book, contact us through Abebooks.com.