New York

How The Strand Has Made Indie Bookselling Look Easy — For 90 Years

The Strand isn’t untouchable, however. Even before the era of Big Bookstores, the Strand had to scrap to stay afloat. “My mother tells a story of when she was first married,” Bass Wyden told HuffPost. “My dad came home and said, ‘I don’t know what we’re going to do. We only took in $17 of sales.’” At each frightening turn, however, the Basses managed to keep plunging ahead and keep the store in business. During the Great Depression, Benjamin Bass fell badly behind on his rent, but was allowed to stay on until he could repay the debt by his landlord, a Stuyvesant scion. Years later, when the Stuyvesants doubled rents in the area, the Strand was left untouched.  

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