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Behind the Headlines: Owner of Reedy Press discusses impact of warehouse fire on his business

Reedy Press owner Josh Stevens talks about the damages done to his business from a warehouse fire.
Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio
Reedy Press owner Josh Stevens talks about the damages done to his business from a warehouse fire.

This week, a warehouse five-alarm fire near 39th Street and Park Avenue caused substantial damage and losses. Among the warehouse’s tenants is Reedy Press, a local book publishing company.

On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh talked to Reedy Press owner Josh Stevens about the damages done to his business from the fire. He said the experience has been traumatic. 

“Many authors over a period of years have written books for us on very niche topics, and the idea that those might not be available is upsetting,” he said.

The company is assessing their losses for insurance claims, but a lot more than books were lost, including shipping equipment, warehouse carts and hardware.

Stevens said it is very unlikely the company will have a substantial supply of books before the holidays. Their goal is to have some titles in mid-December and continue in the following year.

“To be not selling books is very odd and eerie,” Stevens said. The company will emphasize in publishing newer books, books that sell most consistently and St. Louis-based products first.

Some local book stores, including Left Bank Books and Book House have offered to hold special sales and pre-order sales on books Reedy Press publishes.

“I’m not sure if we have much to stand on, but we have confidence in what we’ve achieved so far and the spirit behind everything,” Stevens said.


St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary EdwardsAlex Heuer and Lara Hamdan give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.

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Lara is the Engagement Editor at St. Louis Public Radio.