John Cole's Book Shop

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John Cole's Book and Craft Shop's book trade label.

John Cole's Book Shop (originally John Cole's Book and Craft Shop) was a bookstore in La Jolla, San Diego, California. It was founded in 1946 by John (d. 1959) and Barbara Cole (d. 2004) on Ivanhoe Avenue, and moved in 1966 to the Wisteria Cottage at 780 Prospect Street. The cottage had housed Ellen Browning Scripps' half-sister Virginia, and La Jolla Country Day School, prior to becoming the location of John Cole's Book Shop. Susan and Charles Cole, the daughter and son of John and Barbara Cole worked in the book shop as did Susan's daughter Trilce and Charles' son Zachary. Zachary sold harmonicas in the book store. Parties were held for numerous authors over the years. The La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art lent sculptures to John Cole's Book Shop which were displayed on the grounds.

John Cole's Book Shop specialized in books about Mexico, and specifically the Baja Peninsula as well as Mexican art.

Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, was a close friend of both John and Barbara Cole as early as the 1940s, lived in La Jolla and regularly signed books for the shop.

The shop closed in 2005, and the cottage is to be turned into a museum by the La Jolla Historical Society.


  • Bell, Dianne (2004-11-27). "Bookstore is losing its place in local history". The San Diego Union-Tribune.
  • La Jolla Historical Society. "History of our Buildings". Archived from the original on 2007-05-18. Retrieved 2007-04-25.
  • Rowe, Peter (2005-01-16). "The end". The San Diego Union-Tribune.
  • Steele, Jeanette (2006-10-08). "New life for an old cottage". The San Diego Union-Tribune. Archived from the original on 2015-11-05. Retrieved 2019-08-25.
  • Williams, Jack (2004-07-20). "Obituary: Barbara Cole, 91; proprietor of beloved La Jolla bookstore". The San Diego Union-Tribune. Archived from the original on 2015-11-05. Retrieved 2019-08-25.

Coordinates: 32°50′43″N 117°16′38″W / 32.8452°N 117.2772°W / 32.8452; -117.2772