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30028 Ford Rd
Garden City, MI 48135
Phone: 313-381-1000
Fax: 313-592-8720

A Brief Dove History

In the early 1980's Jeffrey Ball was a student at St John's Seminary in Plymouth, MI. In his search for books on the Bible and ancient history he became a frequent customer at the Berkley Bookstore in Berkley, MI, operated by Ed Jonas. The Berkley Bookstore usually had exceptional books in religion and history due to the owner's interests. The two became friends and decided to open a new venture together. In January of 1985 Dove Booksellers officially opened in the back room of the Berkley Bookstore. Hebraists will see that the store name comes from Ed's surname.

The main means of doing business at that time was by printed catalog, and the development of a mailing list through small ads in Biblical Archaeology Review. The primary asset at that time was a Kaypro PC upon which all business would come to be done. There are still a few Dove customers who remember the hand written invoices of this early period. John Marine entered the business as an owner during this period, having known Jeffrey as a customer when he worked at Discount Bible in the 80's.

During this period Dove began to display at the AAR/SBL Annual Meetings and other conferences, with booths staffed by Dove. Also during this period Dove formed many important relationships and friendships. Ed still endeavored to run a general used bookstore as well, so the three owners decided it would be best if Dove moved to a small retail space on McNichols Road in Detroit.

In the Detroit location, Dove began to buy and sell used books, which has come to be one of the most important and enjoyable facets of the business. Continued growth and expansion caused overcrowding again and as result, Dove moved again at the beginning of 1993, to a much larger space in Livonia, on Schoolcraft Rd.

There were several developments during the seven years in Livonia. The used book part of the business continued to expand, with Dove making many important buys from senior scholars and their estates. Also, in partnership with Wm B Eerdmans in Grand Rapids, Dove began co-publishing a new series, "The Biblical Resource Series" which features reprints of important books in biblical studies.

During the 1990's Dove also began to handle the display booth for Sheffield Academic Press at the AAR/SBL Annual Meetings. Many Dove customers remember Jeffrey and John from this booth during a time of strong growth for Sheffield under the editors David Clines and Philip Davies. This arrangement went on until 1999 when Sheffield became a large enough press to bring its own staff. It was during this period as well that Dove developed a web site and began to utilize the Internet.

At the end of 1999 Dove moved again, this time to Dearborn, MI. The Dearborn location was an upstairs suite of rooms on Michigan Avenue, a mile from the world headquarters of the Ford Motor Company. This was another period of expansion for Dove. The Internet began to displace printed catalogs during this period. Information could be delivered much faster through email than via printed catalogs. Long time employee George Wind entered as an owner and John Marine moved on to other things. The Dearborn era was one of rapid expansion; out of space again, Dove moved to a new larger space in Allen Park, MI in 2005.

Dove closed its Allen Park store in June 2009, and functioned exclusively as an online bookstore. This move was a good one in many ways but not in others so in October of 2011 Dove moved to a new retail space in Garden City MI.
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