Eso Won Books, an African-American specialty store in Los Angeles, has received considerable support from the local community following last month's news of its possible closing. Co-owners James Fugate and Thomas Hamilton reported to BTW in October that attention from the pastor of the local AME (First African Methodist Episcopal) church, newspaper articles, and Internet discussions, helped raise sales on Columbus Day weekend to 500 percent above the usual.
This week, Hamilton said sales were still very strong. He credited a "media blitz," which included coverage by television news, radio stations, the L.A. Times, and many local papers, for the increase in sales. "All that media turned things around," Hamilton said. "Our walk-in traffic has picked up, and we're doing very well."
Hamilton feels certain business will remain very good for the holidays, and through February, which is Black History Month. After that, Hamilton said. "We're hoping that sales will stay strong. If people keep doing what they're doing, we'll be fine." --Nomi Schwartz