The retail book business in the United States may have begun with John Dunton’s visit in 1685-86 where he is said to have sold a load of books to help cover some debts. He is said to have found the New England book buyers “‘smart’ customers and slow paymasters.”(Chambers 1832). This time line, however, concentrates on the 20th and 21st centuries for now.
Chambers, R., 1832. The Book of Days: A Miscellany of Popular Antiquities in Connection with the Calendar, Including Anecdote, Biography, & History, Curiosities of Literature and Oddities of Human Life and Character. W. & R. Chambers Limited.