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Chelsea with Flowers

Come check us out & say hello!

In the words of Heirloom’s founder, Chelsea Carr Rectanus, “Bookstores cherish the growth of reading, one page at a time. Chicago bookstores are heirlooms to our city, thus our name.” 

Chelsea created Heirloom Books as a cozy, eclectic used bookstore, open and inviting to all, with a wide selection of books, periodicals, LPs, DVDs, CDs, VHS tapes, and various artwork from local artists. Heirloom is where Chelsea felt happiest and most at home. She spent her days tending it: receiving and shelving books, decorating in her inimitably cozy style, and organizing events, but also thoughtfully attending to and caring for her customers and many friends.

Tragically, on August 7, 2020, we lost Chelsea suddenly to illness. Chelsea was a generous listener in a loquacious world; a beautiful, compassionate soul. We deeply mourn her loss.

Since her passing, Heirloom has been run on an all-volunteer basis. It is managed day-to-day by the Eriks – Graff and Badger – in close collaboration with her parents, and with help from a host of others who loved Chelsea as we did. Our aim is to keep Chelsea’s creation up and running, and to maintain her vision for it far into the future. 

We invite you to visit, enjoy the atmosphere, browse our many books and other items, and participate in the diverse and accepting community that Chelsea built and that is Heirloom Books.

Support Heirloom Books

If we've not got it or you can't visit, you can still support us by ordering thru our affiliate, Bookshop.org, or by donating to our GoFundMe campaign.

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Heirloom Books interior

Signed & Antique Books

Mademoiselle De Maupin

Mademoiselle De Maupin
Theophile Gautier
$14.00

Freezer Burn Blues

Freezer Burn Blues
Shannon Danford
$20.00

Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants
Sara Gruen
$20.00

View All Signed & Antique Books

Items are priced at time of purchase by matching or beating the lowest online price available for the same item in the same condition.
There is a $10 minimum on credit card transactions