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20 May 2013

Purchase Used Genealogy Books and Support Our Library on eBay

eBay defines itself as "the world's online marketplace – a place for buyers and sellers to come together and trade almost anything." It is now also a way to give to the California Genealogical Society and Library.

Thanks to the generosity of our members, book donations continue to add to our library's collection but with so many gifts many are duplicates. Using our book donation policy as a guide, duplicate titles in better condition than our shelved volumes are retained. The rest accumulate until the library committee organizes a used book sale, usually held in conjunction with special events like the annual meeting, NEHGS Comes West, or our recent 115th Anniversary Celebration. The used book sales are always successful and are great source of revenue to support the library.

Now our library volunteers have taken their fund-raising formula to the "online marketplace"  with eBay Giving Works – a program designed to make it easy for nonprofits to sell online. Best of all,100% of the proceeds come back to CGS.

Shirley Hoye and Arlene Miles
Selling books on eBay is a team effort. Shirley Hoye researches each book to determine the price, makes a copy of the title page, notes the book's condition and weighs it. Marcelle White, who set up the society's eBay and Giving Works accounts, photographs the books and uploads them to the site.

Marci and Arlene Miles monitor sales and ready the books for shipping. Gibran Rath, Shirley and Library Chair Henry Snyder have donated packaging materials. One of the team will box up the books, print labels and ship them. Arlene commented, "It's quite a job to synchronize but we now have one heck of a team!"

Marcelle White and Arlene Miles

Henry noted, "Thanks to Marci, we now are approaching 100 items listed for sale on eBay. Even better, in the first week or so we sold seven titles for more than $200.00."Marci added, "I'm glad to be able to make our library's overstock available via eBay to family history researchers across the country."

While books are waiting to be added to eBay they are available for browsing in the library. Members may view the selection of used books during our open hours Thursday through Saturday. Books can be be purchased from the front desk volunteers who will issue a receipt.

Marcelle White and Henry Snyder

Visit the society's eBay online storefront CGSbooks4Sale at to purchase our used books. You can even include a donation!

Or, start selling on eBay and donate a percentage of your proceeds (up to 100%) to the California Genealogical Society using eBay Giving Works at

Copyright © 2013 by Kathryn M. Doyle, California Genealogical Society and Library.