John D’Arcangelo’s phone has been ringing off the hook since his book A Trail to Remember hit the shelf.
The collection of historical stories about Trail, written by the people, sold out in just a few short days after it was released late last month. The successful run has prompted the retired Trail teacher to print another 300 copies. He expects the next batch to arrive by the end of the month.
“It’s been a wonderful experience,” he told the Trail Times. “I made a lot of new friends, I reacquainted with old friends and shared some great memories.”
Without grant money to back this order, the price of the book will be raised to $25 from $20. D’Arcangelo said last week that he has a list of 40 people awaiting a copy, Crockett Book looking for its second batch and interest from other potential sellers.
“The book has been a real community thing,” he added. “A lot of people made the book possible, especially the contributors; If they don’t write the stories, there is no book.”
A passion to preserve Trail stories started when his dad gave him a video camera and suggested he interview Mike Bukna and Jimmy Morris.
But the appetite progressed when he set out to find the story behind locally naming the Columbia River’s rapids “the Onions” and further grew when he uncovered more interesting stores while at it.
The book continued to present itself through various conversations over coffee with friends and finally the timing seemed right. After collecting 200 submissions, Sarah Benson, director of Trail Museum and Archives, and Trail Historical Society president Jamie Forbes helped select 162.
The break-even project was planted with seed money from the Columbia Kootenay Culture Alliance ($4,000) and then further supported by $1,400 raised from community organizations and private businesses (Salsman Insurance Agency, the Colombo Lodge and the Trail Fiesta Italiana).
D’Arcangelo’s new pastime hasn’t stopped. He is still collecting historical stories and photos to preserve in the archives.
To share a story or to reserve a book, residents are encouraged to contact him at 368-8986.