GoFundMe for Uncle Hugo’s Bookstore, destroyed by rioters last night

The GoFundMe for Uncle Hugos is now live. Please, share this far and wide.

For those of you that don’t know, Uncle Hugo’s is a locally owned, indy bookstore in Minneapolis. It got burned down last night by rioters. The building it a total loss. All the inventory was destroyed.

Uncle Hugo’s has been there since 1974. It was a special place, beloved by the locals. Because it specialized in used books, a bunch of irreplaceable 1st editions and signed copies by authors who are no longer with us were lost.

Don Blyly is the owner. On a personal level, he’s the bookstore owner who got a copy of my first manuscript, who then passed it on to Toni Weisskopf at Baen, telling her that it was a perfect fit for Baen, and that he could sell this book, except the dummy who wrote it was self publishing. I’ve been to Uncle Hugo’s to sign books probably eight or nine times now. Basically, Don helped launch my career, and I’m not alone.

Don is trying to figure out how to proceed, with a new location, or with a scaled down operation.


Uncle Hugo's Bookstore Burned in Riot. Fundraiser Back On! Link Below

41 thoughts on “GoFundMe for Uncle Hugo’s Bookstore, destroyed by rioters last night”

  1. And this is what really cheeses me off. Except I don’t want to use the word for fromage, harsher language is really called for. I get that there are people legitimately protesting for justice regarding George Floyd’s death at the hands of sworn officers who were supposed to be responsible for his safety. But looting and destruction is not protest. And it goes far beyond mere property crime.

    What merchant or corporation would hazard the risk of rebuilding in the same neighborhoods? Best of luck to Uncle Hugo’s. I’ll throw them some cash.

    1. }}} But looting and destruction is not protest.

      And it damned sure does nothing to promote justice.

      1. And more and more, the actual information on the death of dear sainted George is not looking like it fits the narrative. Yes, died in police custody, but…

        Put up a fight.

        During an arrest.

        With a history of resisting arrest.

        And a history of extensive criminal activity.

        And… a history of health issues.

        Maybe manslaughter at best, but police actively curbstomping and choking him to death? Yeah, no.

        Meanwhile, what political agenda is being pushed, while…

        The College Football Hall of Fame is looted and burned in Atlanta, along with other locations there.

        And the Twin Cities burn, and burn, and burn.

        1. Ok but think about it, does any of that justify extrajudicial killing by forcibly suffocating the man by kneeling on his neck while he pleaded that he couldn’t breathe, all because of $20 that were allegedly counterfeited? We live in a developed democracy this shouldn’t be happening. Also the video footage released doesn’t support him resisting arrest.

          1. No one has ever said that its ok to kill him. But the over reaction is astounding. People get killed by the police. Its a sad part of their job that I am sure they wish didn’t happen. Why this particular incident occurred is hard to explain. The cops will be punished. The looters, who have stolen and killed as well probably will not be punished. We have a two tiered justice system. Talk about something that shouldn’t happen.

        2. The audio that leaked makes 3rd degree a slam dunk. Well, unless you think a union lawyer can successfully argue that Floyd could fake not having a pulse.

        3. I hear you, but once the cuffs are off, he gets up and gets put in the back of the cruiser. It was 8 minutes he was on the ground (I think I read). After the cuffs are on, there’s no point to a knee to the neck.

        4. Not being a “saint” doesn’t give any police officer the right to asphyxiate you to death. He was already in handcuffs.

    2. I get that there are people legitimately protesting for justice regarding George Floyd’s death at the hands of sworn officers who were supposed to be responsible for his safety.

      Is this like Trump’s “there were some very fine people there” comment?

  2. I am heartbroken to read this. So much lost, not just in books and money, but in a place that was made with love and joy. I had hoped this wasn’t the store you would mention with such warmth when I read about this on Twitter. Hopefully, it will be rebuilt.

  3. Put a short post up about it on my site as well, with a link to the GoFundMe. I’ve never been to Uncle Hugo’s, nor ordered from there (nor, to my knowledge, have they ever acquired one of my books) but I’ve heard the stories at various cons. The place meant a lot to the Sci-Fi/Fantasy community.

  4. I have both donated and sent the word out to all of my “Usual Suspects.” May the force be with us.

  5. Be advised. Some in the Twitterverse are shitting on this fundraiser because Don is not personally doing an infomercial on it or at least coming to twitter to soothe their nerves

  6. My comment on reading the news was not suitable for a family blog. Donation made. I’ve never been there, but I’ve never heard a bad thing about them.

  7. This is why the rioting scum should be shot in the face and why I give absolutely zero cares for any ‘legitimate” issues they may have.

  8. I would gladly donate my Science Fiction collection. We have got to bring this one back to life.

  9. Followed the link – it says the GoFundMe is closed (for now). Please keep us updated on how we can help.

    1. Trying again to reply. According to the web site home page, the owner is considering his rebuilding/reopening options and does not want any crowdfunding done at this time. I’m glad I made it to the store a week ago Saturday (shortly after the state/city permitted “non-essential” businesses to reopen) to feed my book browsing/buying fix. I will definitely be contributing to any crowdfunding if Don decides to reopen.

  10. Hopefully they will reopen someplace safer. Though is any place safe from the hordes of barbarians we have in our midst?

  11. I’m so sorry to have read this on Twitter. I spread the word with your URL as much as I could there, and when I woke up it looks like there have been plenty of retweets. So, I hope that Uncle Hugo’s will return, somehow, in some way.

    I grieve for the loss of a place so clearly loved and made with love, that people have many, many good memories of. I mourn the loss of so many valuable books, valuable not only because of their monetary worth, but also their worth as stories that fire up people’s imaginations, and let them dream.

    Let the things loved be rebuilt.

  12. Larry:

    I’ve been going to Uncle Hugo’s since they opened in their first location just off Franklin Avenue and the freeway. I followed them when they moved to their now-burned location just off the intersection of Lake Street and Chicago Avenue. Don has always been a good owner, and I also want to mention the passing (in 2001, I think) of Scott Imes, who knew every customer that came into the shop, and knew their tastes, and could point out new authors and books based on that. It was one of the things that made it a special place.

    I have have been afraid of something like this happening ever since they moved. The property was inexpensive because it was a terrible neighborhood. When the Sears building (across the street) closed things got even worse, and I was threatened many time by thugs when I’d park in the empty lot there to walk over.

    After the renovation of the old Sears building things got better for a little while, and then the sudden influx of Somalis led to it getting much, much worse. This area is just south and west of the area referred to as “Little Mogadishu” where even before the riots and looting the police presence was undetectable.

    My wife and I moved last year from the center of South Mpls to a small town in Wyoming after I retired, and with the WuFlu being horribly mishandled by the utterly inept Governor Walz, and now the Boy Wonder Mayor ordering the police to basically surrender to the mobs we heave a sigh of relief every time we see what’s going on.

    I actually met you at one of the Uncle Hugo’s signings…the line to get your books stretched out the door.

    It was the world’s best SF/F bookstore (don’t forget Uncle Edgar’s mystery bookstore in the back room, too) with an incredible selection of used paperback and hardcover, as well as all of the current new books on the market.

    After we moved I’ve been buying both new and used books from them and having them boxed and shipped here to Wyoming. Had I ever gone back to visit Minnesota a stop at Uncle Hugo’s would have been right at the top of the list of things to do while I was there, since I really missed the ability to physically browse the fully-packed aisles of books.

    We’ll miss the store and the people.

  13. Even though I haven’t been able to visit the Uncles for some time (money problems) I am heartbroken and furious about this.

    What. Was. The. Goddamned. POINT?

    Even Abbie Hoffman knew better: “Random violence produces random political results. Why waste even a rock?” —Steal This Book

  14. From the web site, the owner is considering his options and does not want any crowdfunding done at this time. I’m glad I made it there a week ago Saturday (shortly after the governor and the city permitted “non-essential” businesses to reopen) to feed my book browsing/buying fix.

    Link to web site: http://www.unclehugo.com/prod/index.shtml

  15. “What. Was. The. Goddamned. POINT?”

    That Antifa has outer themselves as a terrorist organization, and all of these a-holes that provided these black idiots with pallets of bricks immediately went into hiding when the US Attorney General declared them a terrorist org.

    That Trump is correctly calling this a state issue, and Democrats are shooting themselves in the ass by not quelling the riots.

    Expect a Trumpslide with fireworks this November, and a manhunt for Antifa/blackbloc terrorists.

  16. Growing evidence of pre-placed piles of bricks and other pre-riot site prep, plus the ordered stand-down of police and the retreat from their own precinct HQ leads to the conclusion that this was a put-up job. The fact that it happened in a lot of cities indicates that it was done on a national level.

    Mr. Blyly should take his insurance money and move to Utah or Arizona. At least the weather is better, even if Phoenix cops let the dirtbags loot the Scotsdale Fashion Square mall. Maybe try Wickenburg, lots of old cowboys still there.

    1. There isn’t going to be any insurance money. Virtually all insurance policies exclude civil unrest.

    2. To The Phantom:

      If the Uncle’s business insurance policy is anything like most homeowner’s then they will not be getting anything from them. The vast majority of policies explicitly exclude from coverage things like radiation damage from nuclear power plants, damage from space debris or extraterrestrial objects, damage from flooding, damage during martial law, and (of importance here) damage caused during “civil disturbances”.

      Most small business owners are going to be out of luck when it comes to pursuing a claim in the areas hit by riots and arsonists. The last count I saw in the Mpls/St. Paul area was almost 300 businesses utterly destroyed. Most won’t come back anytime soon. These areas will probably never come back given the business climate that the statist, authoritarian ,collectivists have engendered there.

  17. This whole page seems to be bullshit, since i tried to share something DIRECTLY from Uncle Hugos website and was told that it was spam. The owner wants NO crowd-funding at this time. Anyone who claims to have permission is lying. Don has said that IF he crowdfunds, it will be in HIS name, no one elses

    1. Nope. I just talked to Don. Alexi was over zealous and launched this without any permission, but he was trying to help. Alexi has now turned the GoFundMe over to Sam, who is Don’s son. (Don doesn’t really do much on the internet).

      1. So….its on? I am so confused. Can someone who knows FOR CERTAIN speak. Not if you just read this or that, but if you know yourself to have the current answer.

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