Who We Are
David Spilman Fine Books, ABAA is an online bookseller specializing in antiquarian rare and fine books, maps, and ephemera related to exploration, adventure, and world history. Areas of specialty and interest are in Antarctic and Arctic exploration, American western expansion, the Gold Rush eras, Cook and Pacific Expeditions, California, the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, and Klondike. He also has a curiosity and interest in just about any subject.
David has collected books for many years and started developing his bookselling business in 2009 and became active in 2012. After attending the Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar in 2010 (CABS, also known as “booksellers boot camp”), he built his inventory, established a business presence in 2012, set up this website, and began showing at Book Fairs in early 2015. Also, he has attended courses at Rare Book Schools at the University of Virginia and University of California to develop his continuing education.
In July, 2018, he was elected a member of the Antiquarian Bookseller's Association of America (ABAA). David is also a member, and served as Treasurer for five years, of the Independent Online Booksellers Association (IOBA). He strongly supports the professional development and code of ethics ABAA and IOBA. To be successful in the services booksellers provide to the public, there must be a high standard of competency and professional ethics that ABAA and IOBA support and promote.
Other current and past memberships are in the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) of the Association of College and Research Libraries Division (ACRL) of the American Library Association (ALA). This section brings together collectors, booksellers, researchers, and librarians to promote awareness of special collections and the handling of rare books and manuscripts. And he is a member of the Book Club of California, based in San Francisco, that has been promoting and publishing books since 1912. Other organizations are the Ephemera Society, California Historical Society, Western History Association, California State Library Foundation, and the California and Washington Map Societies.
In his other non-bookseller life, David has a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Southern California and retired from a long and successful career as a finance director and administrator for several cities in California and municipal finance consultant to cities and special districts. David lives in northern California in the wine country of west Sonoma County. David and his wife Donna have a small farm and enjoy raising registered Shetland sheep for their high-quality wool. He is currently or has served his community on the boards of a non-profit organizations – Burbank Housing, develops affordable housing in Northern California, Rebuilding Together, Junior Achievement and local environmental groups.