About the Bookstore
In 1990, following a decade long expatriation in Europe pursuing the study and practice of the book trade, Erik and Lane Heldfond returned to their native San Francisco to establish the Heldfond Book Gallery, Ltd. Over these many years of terrific growth and change, The Company has held fast to their early vision, best described by the most consistent comment heard from our ever appearing new visitors...“ It’s like a museum in here!”
Maintaining a museum where one may purchase the exhibits... that's our passion and occupation.
The Heldfond Book Gallery, Ltd. buys and sells books which, by nature of their significance and scarcity, have obtained a desirability and value concomitant to that prominence. Trained to trade within a diverse range of subject matter, we endeavor to employ our skills to the benefit of our present and future clients.
Our shelves are always replete with a wide assortment of Antiquarian material ranging from medieval illuminated manuscripts to important 16th through 19th century Literary, Historical and Scientific works.
Fine bindings and leather bound sets abound with a selection of American, British and Continental bindings unmatched in Northern California. We’ve been pleased to provide booklovers, collectors and designers with these sets and bindings throughout the years and have derived great satisfaction in creating and or contributing to many of the finest private collections in the world.
First Editions of important literature is one of the most popular areas in contemporary book collecting. For the collector it imports the opportunity to possess copies of beloved books exactly as they were issued. For the rare bookseller, acquisition of such material is a most challenging and emotionally rewarding endeavor. Our abundance of literary collectibles is vast and ever changing as we pursue our goal of offering superlative First Edition, Signed and Limited Edition copies of those works which, by way of their scope and genius, have achieved immortality.
The Heldfond Book Gallery attracts collectors of Children’s Illustrated Books worldwide. Some rediscover a well-remembered childhood friend while others seek to infuse a new generation with the delights of their past. Still others simply find an evocative tranquility in the stunning illustrations of innocence. It has long been our aim to present the finest and rarest editions of classic children’s illustrated works, which continue to amaze and delight booklovers of all ages.
Materials related to the many diverse disciplines of the Fine Arts occupy a good portion of our inventory. We take great pride in our constantly changing, vast array of Fine and Rare works on Design, Painting, Sculpture, Photography, Architecture, and Art History.
But we don’t stop at buying and selling. The Heldfond Book Gallery has engaged in collection development and private and commercial library design for many years, as well as providing books and designs for stage and screen, retail displays, advertising campaigns and real estate staging. As long time elected members of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers, the Heldfond Book Gallery also conducts numerous private and institutional appraisals each year.
Since its inception, the Heldfond Book Gallery has been dedicated to the service not only of book collectors and book lovers but to the San Francisco Bay Area as well. The preservation and appreciation of Rare Books is surely a cultural refinement which most clearly reflects the values and aspirations of the community at large. For more than two decades, the Heldfond Book Gallery has been active in supporting County libraries and educational institutions through appraisals and collection consultation, lectures, in-school presentations and many other activities which may serve the public good and underscore the fundamental importance of books and literacy in the development and maintenance of a civilized society.
“Incongruously located in the sleepy Northern California Village of San Anselmo, The Heldfond Book Gallery, Ltd. is an internationally renowned repository of historic and rare books. Long regarded as a landmark destination within book collecting circles, the casual visitor is quickly entranced by row upon row of important first editions and jaw dropping bindings spanning 500 years of publishing history. Should books be your vice and you’re San Francisco bound, may we suggest dispensing with cable cars, Fisherman’s Wharf and Alcatraz in favor of a trip across The Golden Gate Bridge to this temple of bibliomania. We promise you’ll be eternally spoiled for all other bookstores.”
– The Times