Powells.com Partner Program

Powells.com Partner Program

The History of Powell's Books
Walter Powell, Powell's BooksFrom humble storefront beginnings in 1971 on a derelict corner of northwest Portland, Oregon, Powell's Books has grown into one of the world's great bookstores, with seven locations in the Portland metropolitan area, and one of the book world's most successful dot-coms (www.powells.com), serving customers worldwide.

Powell's roots began in Chicago, where Michael Powell, as a University of Chicago graduate student, opened his first bookstore in 1970. Encouraged by friends and professors, including novelist Saul Bellow, Michael borrowed $3,000 to assume a lease on a bookstore. The venture proved so successful that he managed to repay the loan within two months.

Michael's father Walter, a retired painting contractor, worked one summer with Michael in the Chicago store. He so enjoyed his experience that upon returning to Portland he opened his own used bookstore.

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