Allen Ahearn, ABAA Member
Allen graduated from the University of Maryland in 1960. From 1960 to 1980 he worked as a contract negotiator for the U.S. Navy and as an advisor on contracts, cost estimating and program management to the Director of Research and Development, Office of the Secretary of Defense. He received his Masters from George Washington University, and graduated from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in 1970.
My wife, Pat, and I became booksellers in 1962, specializing in first editions, a specialty that continues today. The Quill & Brush was established in 1976. The name pays tribute to our first and second open stores where we sold both collectible books and fine art.
My first book, The Book of First Books, was published in 1975 and was in its 4th edition when it was picked up by Putnam's Sons in 1989 and further revised and expanded into Book Collecting: A Comprehensive Guide. Pat joined me as co-author and two more editions were issued before Putnam changed the title once again: In 1999, with a nod to the coming millennium, the last print edition (for now) was published as Book Collecting 2000. In 2014, I updated and revised the book with the assistance of my daughter, Beth, and we published it under our Quill & Brush Press imprint with the tried-and-true title Book Collecting: A Comprehensive Guide. It is an ebook available on Amazon (we acknowledge the irony in this).
Perhaps Pat's and my most well-known guide, Collected Books, was first published by Putnam in 1991. The 4th and latest edition was published by our own Quill & Brush Press in 2011 with the assistance of our daughter, Beth Fisher, as Collected Books: The Guide to Identification & Values. The print run was 2000 copies, a number we thought would be more than sufficient but have since discovered was a little low. As we continue to receive requests for the printed book, which is no longer available, we published an ebook version.
We have also compiled over 200 individual Author Price Guides, and Beth and I plan to update both of the above books and the price guides over the next few years.
Pat passed away in 2014. We were married for 55 years. We had three daughters (Beth, Sue & Dyanne), a son (Allen), 13 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. Who could ask for anything more? And yet, in 2018, with the blessing of my family, I married Nina Masson, a nurse and writer who teaches health care ethics at Georgetown University.
Elizabeth Fisher, ABAA Associate Member
Beth has been with Q&B full time since 1993. She resides in Middletown, Maryland, with her husband Martin. They have 3 sons and 2 daughters. Beth attended North Carolina State University and the University of Maryland. Before joining Q&B, Beth worked for Pratt & Whitney in Florida.