Big Band leaders booked for York Book and Paper Fair

YORK, Pa. – Glenn Miller will be present at the York Book and Paper Fair in April. So will Benny Goodman, the “King of Swing.” Both Dorsey brothers, Tommy and Jimmy, will be there. In all, 48 of the biggest names of the Swing Era will be represented when a collection of hand-signed photographs are featured in the auction held during the biannual event.

The collection was assembled by David Glatfelter when, as a young man, he worked as a maintenance man and general “go-fer” at the Valencia Ballroom on North George Street in York during the late 1930s and early 1940s. It was the peak of the Big Band Era, and every big name touring band played the Valencia. Glatfelter was there and collecting autographs.

“This isn’t just popular culture,” said Pam Lewin, co-owner of the York Book and Paper Fair. “This is history.”

Glatfelter’s collection of 48 original photographs, most of them signed by the bandleaders, will be on the auction block.

The auction is just one of a series of events planned for the day. Scheduled appearances by authors and artists are also on the agenda.

The spring event, scheduled to run from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturday, April 4, will take place in the Old Main building of the York Expo Center.
Ownership of the show was transferred last fall to Pam and Jim Lewin, owners of the York Emporium used book and curiosity shop in downtown York.

“When the opportunity to acquire the York Book and Paper Fair presented itself, we took a long look and decided it was the right thing to do,” said Pam Lewin. “The marriage between the fair and the used book shop just made too much sense to let it pass.”

Since taking over the York Book and Paper Fair, the couple has worked to expand the categories featured during the daylong event. “The attendees are both readers and collectors,” Lewin said. “So, while the emphasis of the York Book and Paper Fair will remain on antiquarian and collectible books and paper, other areas will also be explored.”

Collectible records and comics and related memorabilia were successfully introduced to the Fair last fall. This spring, in addition to autographs and other music-related ephemera, attendees will have the opportunity to meet authors and collect pieces of cultural and historical import.

More than 50 dealers exhibited and more than 600 people attended the York Book and Paper Fair last October. Lewin says early projections show increases for both groups.

“We’re interested in the traditions that stretch back the 20-plus years since the fair’s founding,” Lewin said.  And we’re also interested in innovations. We think there are opportunities here to explore and celebrate both.”

Dealer space for the spring event is still available. Details may be found at