Carl Apollonio, who retired as v-p and director of sales of Crown Publishers in 1990, died on January 24. He was 91.
Apollonio began his book career as owner of Fairfields Book Shop in Brunswick, Me., in 1955, and later worked as a traveling book salesman in the south during the 1960’s, before joining the New York Graphic Society, Inc. He moved to Crown as a sales rep in the late 1970s where he developed a reputation for having an encyclopedic knowledge of independent bookstores. While at Crown, he launched the Orion Books imprint, which was dedicated to aerospace and military history, transportation, and general scientific and technological themes. The imprint fit well with Apollonio’s interests, having become a civilian pilot in 1948.
Late in his time with Crown, Apollonio became an early supporter of the Goddard Riverside Book Fair, after being approached by Goddard board member Don Porter seeking the publishing community’s help to raise funds for the community center. Goddard’s partnership with the publishing industry has continued for 34 years, and over $15 million has been raised to fight homelessness in New York City.
After retiring from Crown, Apollonio built model ships and aircraft to scale for private collectors and worked part-time in a bookstore.