Donald Ray Conner

Nov 8, 1947 - Jun 10, 2013


  Donald Ray Conner, born November 8, 1947, “shuffled off this mortal coil” June 10, 2013 leaving behind his sister, Marcia (Conner) Russell, his brother-in-law, Wally Russell, many Clover and Conner cousins and numerous friends.  He was preceded in death by his parents, Elmer D. and Jessie M. Conner.  His C.K. McClatchy High School (June 1965) classmates will remember Don as one of the organizers of past class reunions.

Don was a native Sacramentan whose book business, Don Conner Fine Books, gained him recognition, friends and customers worldwide.  As a respected, proud member of Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America, Don shared his love of books and vast knowledge generously with all who knew him.  His specialty was natural history, but he could easily quote Mark Twain just as well as he could chat about fishing and birds.  He will be remembered for his extensive knowledge, caring spirit and loving nature. 

As cancer took its toll on his body Don’s friends and family were by his side.  To hear Don’s own words about his life and his passion for books an interview is available at  No services are planned at this time.  Remembrances in Don’s name may be made to the ABAA Benevolent Fund, 20 West 44th St. Ste 507, NY, NY 10036, whose generosity touched him deeply or to the charity of your choice.  Final arrangements are being handled by East Lawn Mortuary.


  • Marcia (Conner) Russell says:

    Today marks a year since Don’s passing. Friends and family still remember his wealth of knowledge about so many subjects as he shared the love of books, natural history, salmon fishing and the Klamath River with all who wanted to listen. Don’s spirit lives on in the places which were dear to him and the many volumes he placed in the hands of those who wanted to learn from their pages.

  • Carl Burke says:

    Don was a good friend. I spent many hours talking with Don in his living room. Recliner fully extended with his left arm resting over his head. I learned a lot from Don and his tutelage led me to the Presidency of the Sacramento Book Collectors Club. He continued to support the SBCC and any other organizations like the Friends of The Library, Sierra Curtis Neighborhood Association and individuals such as myself. I miss Don and his quick wit. Although residing in The Philippines I may be reached at cahow at hotmail dot com.

  • Marcia says:

    Two months today my dear brother left us. Friends, customers, and family are still remembering him through all he left in his vast collection of books and ephemera which are now in the hands of others to cherish as he did.

  • jennie says:

    Don was a rich and condensed conversationalist with a heart as warm as cooked biscuits. Each time he stopped by for a hug or smile he was quick with a smirk or to give you the eye letting you know he was right there with you…in any thought you may have. Such a delight to spend time with, I only wish there were more of it to be had with him. Here’s hoping you are at that big library in the sky Donald…sweet dreams…

  • Marcia says:

    Don has been gone a month today. So many friends and colleagues have shared stories and heartfelt condolences with me. It is uplifting to know he was so highly respected in his “book life” and so loved in his personal life.

  • John McKibben says:

    I was very sad to learn of Don’s death. Over many years he taught me a lot about books and book collecting. He was a kind man who befriended a couple of rank novices book collectors – my late wife and me. I will miss chatting with him at the book fairs.

  • Torrey Johnson says:

    My book shopping / visits, both at the 21st Argus Bokks and later at Don’s home were tremendously enjoyable. Don had an interest and knowledge of so many things I am interested in. Our conversations were so enjoyable. My life was enriched for having known him [as my cash diminished and my library became home to many wonderful reference books]. Thanks Don. You’ll be missed.

  • Sheri Plummer says:

    I have wonderful memories of Don, particularly traveling back east with him and Bill, laughing, looking for books, and listening to Don’s stories. Those were good times. He was generous with his knowledge, passionate about his trade, and a very gentle person. A truly unforgettable man. I am grateful that I had a chance to visit with him before he passed. “Good friends”, he said. Yes, good friends. May you be at peace, Don.

  • Raleigh Conner says:

    Don and Paul Conner were best of friends, besides being nephew and uncle. I would find them spending hours talking about Klamath, Elmer (Don’s dad) and what goes on with people. Both were avid readers and had many things to share. My favorite thing to see was the great bear hugs that Donald gave Paul. I shall miss these visits. Raleigh Conner, Paul’s widow

  • Tom Tolley says:

    So sorry to hear about Don’s passing, always figured I would see him at the next show, never gave a thought that I’d never see that sly smile turn into a big grin again. Don was a truly patient man, so generous with his vast knowledge and so approachable, just a great guy. My condolences to his family and friends and all of those who never had a chance to know Don, one of a vanishing breed of gentle bookmen. Save some space wherever you are Don, you’ll have some company looking for you in the coming years. R.I.P.

  • Diane Paige Smith says:

    Don was a special cousin with whom I shared the passing of our mothers as well as conversations about books. His sense of humor and love of family will always be a fond memory. I am very grateful for the visit I had with him at the clinic…he was alert and despite the circumstances, we were able to enjoy one another and share important things in our lives. I think of him and Marcia often.

  • Michael Good says:

    Don was a gentle and soft spoken man, thoughtful in both word and deed. As a college in the book trade he will be remembered. Michael & Sanda Good

  • Bill and Arlette Peterson says:

    I never knew Don but his sister Marcia is a dear friend of mine. My heart aches with hers at the loss of a dear brother.

  • Chris Volk & Shep Iiams says:

    Ever since we started out selling books in Sacramento 20 years ago, Don was there with his great sense of humor, his generosity, and his helpfulness. He is going to be missed so much – book fairs just won’t be the same without him.

  • Taylor Bowie says:

    I was fortunate to have Don as a friend for more than 30 years…he was a fine bookseller but more importantly, one of the kindest and most decent people I ever knew. Don will be missed by many for a good long time, and his warm and gentle spirit will live on.

  • William Maxwell says:

    Don’s large frame housed a gentle soul. His great love of books was matched by his keen wit and sense of humor, and his ability to make a long story longer. His passing leaves a void in the close knit book world, which cannot be filled.

  • Bill Ewald says:

    Don was a great friend and colleague in the book trade. My life was enhanced by my association with him. Don had a great memory and the gift for gab. I always would tell other booksellers that Don could talk more books off of the shelves that I could physically find by looking. We would enter a shop and I would start looking at the shelves and Don would begin a conversation with the owner. The next thing I would know the owner would be bringing books for Don to look at or Don would be following him to a special location for rarer books. I will miss him.

  • Carol Sandberg says:

    I’m so sad to hear of the death of Don Connor. He was a good man, a good colleague, and a good bookman. I will miss his presence at book fairs for a long time. Rest in peace, Don!

  • Steve & Kathy Adamovich says:

    The ever shrinking community of booksellers has gotten smaller. Don’s vast knowledge and experience and friendship, will be missed.

  • Edwin Glaser says:

    Don was a dear, dear colleague and friend. I hate the idea I will never see him again at book fairs and other bookish activities. He will be missed by all who knew him.

  • David Gregor says:

    I knew for 25 years and we shared a love of the antiquarian book business. He always had a good story to tell and lived his life with great enthusiasm. He has left us too soon and I will miss his love of life. My condolences to his family.

  • Liz Gibson says:

    So glad I had the chance to visit with Don before he left this world and travelled to the next. I know he’s up there now looking out for all his friends and family. Don~Thank you for sharing all the old family photos with me and entrusting me to keep our family’s history alive. Your heart shined through. xoxo!

  • Jeffrey Kremer says:

    My condoldences to the family of this extraordinary man. Who was so well loved by many. He was a gentle, kind man. I remember Don Conner for his gentle kindness to me. When ever I had a question, he would always answer it. If he was busy with something else, he would apologize. In many ways, he was my teacher. I will miss him very much.

  • Marilyn & Tom Tubbs says:

    Don will be greatly missed by us … Enjoyed our hours of sharing stories, book selling tales while exhibiting at the Sacramento Book fairs.. A gentleman and great mentor for others in the book trade. RIP – Tom & Marilyn

  • Marcia Russell says:

    Remembering my brother who left us too soon. He is missed by so many who have enjoyed talking with him at length about antiquarian books. Having the video of his interview in Seattle leaves me with fond memories of the younger brother I kissed goodbye on Sunday the day before he left us.

  • Marcia (Conner) Russell says:

    Today 6/10/15 marks two years since Don’s passing. I remember him daily as we enjoy the many books, treasures and memories he left behind.

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