He was elected mayor of Boston four times, he went to jail for mail fraud, and he zinged President Franklin D. Roosevelt real bad! He's local legend James Michael Curley, and Ken's got his personal letters!
In the Brattle criminal justice system, book based offenses are considered especially heinous. Listen as Ken recounts some book related crimes and scams, from a failed Gutenberg Bible heist at Harvard to his shop's own literate sale lot shoplifters. These are their stories. [Dun Dun]
A glimpse of Ken's fun and surprising personal collections: eclectic bathroom decor, cookbooks about cannibalism, jazz photographs, and a signed Houdini photo that, while technically for sale, he's doing his best not to allow to escape.
Grab your magnifying glass and join Ken as he investigates famous fakes, dubious documents, and suspicious signatures. In this episode we learn all about authentication: why who you know can matter more than what you know, the dangers of wishful thinking, and why most items simply aren’t worth faking. We’ll also delve into the weird world of collectible forgeries.
What do a book made of silk, a 40 volume set of Native American photographs, and T.S. Eliot’s copy of The Great Gatsby have in common? They are all very expensive! In this gem of an episode Ken discusses some of the most valuable treasures ever to pass through the shop, plus a nearly discarded Founding Father letter with an eerily relevant message and the gold rush diary that paid for a baby. You’ll learn all the way to the bank!
Ken takes us on a voyage through the watery world of Titanic memorabilia, including unsinkable sales brochures, doomed dinner menus, and a very limited edition by a passenger of the Carpathia. And that's just the tip of the iceberg!
Ken and Jordan dive deeply into the work of Edward Bernays, "the father of public relations" and a longtime friend of the Gloss family. Learn about Bernays' role in building the modern American home and why he invested so much in the color green.
Any book that could capture the majesty of our first national park would have to be measured in inches, not feet. Check out some photos of the amazing Hayden landscapes on our social media pages, @brattlebookshop!
When a priceless library is stolen, or a rare historical document's authenticity is in question, the U.S. government turns to one man. Ken tells stories of some of his most exciting appraisals, from Paul Revere to the Pilgrim Charter, and imparts some of the magic of everyday appraisals at the shop. All that glitters is not gold!
It goes by many names; the Good Book, the Book of Law, the First Book, the Word of the Lord. But whatever you call it, there's probably one within shouting distance right now. Ken tells some of his favorite stories about the Bible, and explains which editions are the most valuable, and which are the most appropriate for your calorie-conscious diet.
Father and son build a business together in this very special Brattlecast, as Ken gives Jordan an in-depth look at his relationship with his father, and how George Gloss turned his shop into a destination stop for book lovers from all over the world.
Batter up! Red Sox catcher Moe Berg was tasked with intercepting much more than fastballs as a spy inflitrating Nazi Germany. Ken shares intimate stories about Moe's life, including numerous visits to the Brattle Book Shop in this privileged look at the enigmatic ballplayer.
What better place to spend a weekend than at your local book fair? Books, antiques, photographs, authors, you never know what you'll find! Ken talks about how to make the most of a a book fair, and what their future might hold.
The sky is dark, because all the stars are at the Antiques Roadshow! Look behind the scenes with Ken as he recounts some of the best (and worst) segments from over the years, such as a Walt Whitman cameo in a letter from the Civil War, or a wacky candid of a beloved religious leader.
Ken frequently says, "every book came out in a first edition". In part two of our FAQs series, myths and truths about first editions are tackled. Which signatures are valuable? How prevalent is fraud? Ken also regales Jordan with amazing stories tied to valuable books, from J.D. Salinger to Pope John Paul II.
This book is so old. How old is it? Listen to Ken Gloss address this and other gems in part 1 of our series answering frequently asked questions. You'll learn about tips for proper book care, Ken's uncredited Jeopardy cameo, and how a well-made book from the 1490's could very well outlive us all. Fact.
When did you last pick up a newspaper? Hopefully after 1851. Ken brings Jordan some authentic 19th century newspapers, and outlines the evolution of print periodicals in America. Learn about competing publications in Richmond and New York covering the Civil War, as well as the rise of mass print advertising, and its unfortunate side effect on slavery. There’s nothing quite like getting history right from the source.
On the morning of February 1st, 1980, Ken Gloss receives the devastating news that the wooden 5-story building housing his livelihood is burning down. The losses are nigh incalculable, but what follows, fortunately, is a story of optimism, ingenuity, and of overwhelming camaraderie from the citizens of a city that just loves to read.
Life Magazine: a touchstone of American culture for nearly a century. In this episode, Ken Gloss provides some fascinating background on the enduring popularity of Life among amateur collectors, and the unique way its content, photography, and advertising captured the zeitgeist. Can you guess the magazine's rarest and most elusive cover?
What do you do with all those books your family has accumulated? Ken discusses how to start the process of letting go. Hear how he goes out to houses everyday, but never knows what he'll find. And that includes anything from trained raccoons to live WWII ammo.