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Titcomb's Bookshop

Titcomb's Bookshop

Our History

In 1966, Ralph Titcomb, an engineer with General Electric, was transferred to Connecticut. He and his wife, Nancy discovered that finding a house for their 6 young children was difficult, but they settled on an old house with 7 acres and several barns in the small town of Canterbury. The house had not been lived in for over 10 years and the prior owners were a mother and daughter who died at ages 102 and 82 respectively. As the couple worked on the house, the children explored the property, and soon discovered in one of the barns a large pile of rare papers and books dating back to the 1600s. The Titcombs started a mail order catalog to sell some of the books and their business, aptly named ‘The Paper Barn,” blossomed from there. The very first sale yielded $44 that was quickly used to buy a Saint Bernard puppy for the kids. (They did, after all, find the treasure!).

When Ralph was transferred again in 1969, the family, now with 8 children, moved to East Sandwich. They saw immediate appeal in the 1690, three-quarter Cape style home at 432 Route 6A. The house had a one-story enclosed breezeway and office that had served as an antique store in its past. The Paper Barn would now have a retail store. The family moved in on July 16, 1969, the day the first manned moon landing by Apollo 11 was launched. In addition to caring for their 8 children, aged 9 months to 14 years, and Ralph Titcomb’s full time job as an engineer, the couple opened the used and rare bookst

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Titcomb's Bookshop

432 Route 6A., East Sandwich, MA 02537


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