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Rare and collectable books to be featured at weekend book fair

Book lovers will have an opportunity to browse and buy rare & collectable this weekend at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center.

The Buffalo Niagara International Antiquarian Book, Paper & Ephemera Fair will be held Saturday, May 19th and Sunday, May 20th. 

The event was organized by Ron Cozzi, owner of Old Editions Book Shop & Cafe at the corner of East Huron and Oak Streets in downtown Buffalo.

Cozzi is an expert on rare and collectible books.

"I tell people that you can have a book that is old and rare...but not really valuable," said Cozzi.

Cozzi sits in a library room on the second floor of his Old Editions book shop -- a room contains a number of leather bound books.  Nearby is the first copy of the Gutenberg Bible.  The original is in the Library of Congress.  But the one Cozzi holds was made in 1961 and  will  be on display at this weekend's book event. 

"It's a facsimile that was down in 1961.  It's the first facsimile that was ever down in the United States," said Cozzi.

Cozzi's copy of the Gutenberg Bible is considered a collectors item.

"The significance is Mr. Gutenberg invented what we call moveable type...he thought the first book he printed with this moveable type should be the bible," said Cozzi.

Cozzi second hand book shop features a number of books that are out of print. And despite new technology and book kindles.  He says the popularity of a printed book is bigger than ever  and now spans the generations.

"Just look at the Harry Potter craze. The first edition of Harry Potter, believe it or not, is now selling for over $5,000," said Cozzi

The book fair will feature many books about the history of our region...including rare books from the Roycroft Camps in East Aurora and a selection of books depicting Buffalo's history, specifically of the 19th century.

"People wondering why you are running this book shop in Buffalo, well the fact is Buffalo had many wealthy people...these people all collected books, " noted Cozzi.

Right now Cozzi has in stock the first edition of a Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.  His advise if you are considering collecting.

t might be worth something-- hang on to the dust jacket --a used book is worth twice as much with the jacket on it.

"The dust jacket is very important...don't throw that dust jack very important...your used book is worth twice as much with the dust jacket on," said Cozzi