The Antiquarium was an Omaha literary icon. Tom Rudloff made it possible. From his chair at the front of his Old Market bookshop, Rudloff inspired generations of Omaha readers, artists, and thinkers.
Rudloff passed away on the morning of Sunday, May 29. He suffered heart failure following pneumonia in his third bout with cancer. He was 76 years old.
From 1969 until 2006, Rudloff ran the Antiquarium Book Store in downtown Omaha. A record shop in the Antiquarium’s basement helped the used bookstore to become a pivotal place in the city’s indie rock scene, fostering talents such Connor Oberst of Bright Eyes and Simon Joyner. Rudloff relocated his bookshop to Brownville, Nebraska, in 2006. The Antiquarium Record Store remained in Omaha, but closed in 2012.
Omaha bibliophiles frequently made the hour drive south to patronize Rudloff’s Antiquarium. Omaha Magazine last spoke with Rudloff for a story in May of 2015, “The Creative Spirit of Brownville” (https://omahamagazine.com/2015/05/the-creative-spirit-of-brownville/)
The local blog Aksarbent has updated details about the memorial services scheduled for Friday, June 3 (http://aksarbent.blogspot.com/2016/05/antiquariums-tom-rudloff-dead-at-76.html).