Traders Of Babylon – Doomed

Traders of Babylon goes bankrupt in Hoboken, NJ

Oh boy. I always thought there was plenty of lonely, single men in the Mile Square who loved collecting comic books and action figures – that Traders of Babylon in Hoboken would be around forever!

Not the case, I guess – as the United States Department of Justice has taken over this property, and everything inside this store at 66 Willow Ave. is being auctioned off under the orders of the U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Court.

There is SO MUCH STUFF (over 300,000 items), that they’re auctioning off everything in big lots – likely several hundred of them. So buying an individual piece is out of the question due to the enormity of the auction – and this will NOT be held online as originally believed.

You can inspect the items personally on Friday, October 19th from 10am to 4pm – and the live-onsite auction takes place on Monday, October 22nd from 9am to 11am.

Traders of Babylon – Hoboken, NJ

9/13/2007 Update:

If you’re into unique jewelry or rare comic books, you should check out the Traders of Babylon on 1st street in Hoboken. The store recently moved from 259 1st Street to 265 1st Street because the owners needed more square footage for their merchandise.

If you shop at this store, you can be sure that none of your girlfriends will be wearing what you are, because most likely it’s an original. Lovingly handcrafted rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings (not the low quality, expensive items that they carry at Zales or Macy*s) line the counters along a large portion of the store. Jeweler and owner Stephen Kilnisan says “99% or our items are designed by us.”

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Kilnisan, who transforms gold and silver like a painter does a blank canvas, went to school at GIA, apprenticed with several jewelers, but says that he’s also self-trained. The items he designs sometimes even resemble graffiti, fantasy and Goth. “The jewelry is pretty much my crazy ideas or whatever I’m into at the time,” Kilnisan says. “It ranges (the pieces) from antiquity up to the influence of rap music.”

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Kilnisan, who spends anywhere between a couple of days to several months designing jewelry, falls in love with each project. When I ask him if he has a favorite, he informs me that it’s usually what he’s working on that week.

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So what was his project of the week as of yesterday? “They came out with comic poster stamps,” he explains. “And I designed a sterling silver frame that you can slip the stamp into, and you can actually wear the stamp.”

At this point, I should also mention that a part of the quirky allure of the Traders of Babylon is that one half of the store – the area not occupied by custom made jewelry – is devoted entirely to comics. In fact, the store stocks anywhere around 30,000 comics at a certain point in time. They carry more common comics such as The Marvel and DC, but Kilnisan stocks likes to stock up on the independent ones, “for their art and creativity.”

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Eva and Steven Kilnisan Diamond and Gemstone Specialists
Description – Fine Jewelers & Comic book distributors
Services – Wedding Rings, Wedding Bands and Diamond Engagement Rings, Major Bridal lines
Website – www.wedbands.com
Email: Babylon@pipeline.com
Address – 259 1st St, Hoboken, NJ 07030
Telephone – (201) 659-0802

(previous location)
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20 Responses

  1. videoordvd says:

    Looks like they stock comic books as well, too bad they’re not open on Wednesdays when new books are released.

  2. gov says:

    i’ve had two custom pieces made for my wife by these folks and they were MORE than expected. on one of the pieces she gets literally dozens of compliments almost everywhere she goes. i highly recommend them, especially if as 411 says, your tastes are beyond the standard stuff or, if you want something custom made. just bring in a picture and he’ll make it from wax, get your approval and make it.

    prices are VERY reasonable as well. two thumbs up for these guys.

    btw–i have zero affiliation with them but i am just very impressed with their work.

  3. beamrider9 says:

    If they have comics, I’ll have to check them out. It’s criminal that a town of Hoboken’s size and proximity to New York has no comic shops. I guess our demographic doesn’t lend itself well to it.

    (Anyone click the link to see their website? Ouch. It’s garish by Internet standards of 10 years ago.)

  4. HomeTeam says:

    [quote comment=”43423″]If they have comics, I’ll have to check them out. It’s criminal that a town of Hoboken’s size and proximity to New York has no comic shops. I guess our demographic doesn’t lend itself well to it.

    (Anyone click the link to see their website? Ouch. It’s garish by Internet standards of 10 years ago.)[/quote]

    Used to be two when I moved here if I remember correctly. I work in the business so my comics are free, but it is nice that there is a place to pick up those elusive back issues or random indy stuff.

  5. beamrider9 says:

    [quote comment=”43425″]Used to be two when I moved here if I remember correctly. I work in the business so my comics are free, but it is nice that there is a place to pick up those elusive back issues or random indy stuff.[/quote]

    I didn’t know that. Just curious – how long ago was that, and where were they located?

  6. fmn says:

    hoboken has n decent comic book shops, no art supplies stores, no specialty clothing stores… always my biggest peeve about this town.

  7. fmn says:

    and as for this store, im glad they’re stocking more comic books with the new location but honestly its really confusing. ive never heard of jewelry/comics before, just a really weird mix. i used to think maybe this was just some sort of pawn shop because of that reason. when i realized it wasnt, i had no idea it was original jewelry either.

  8. HomeTeam says:

    [quote comment=”43432″][quote comment=”43425″]Used to be two when I moved here if I remember correctly. I work in the business so my comics are free, but it is nice that there is a place to pick up those elusive back issues or random indy stuff.[/quote]

    I didn’t know that. Just curious – how long ago was that, and where were they located?[/quote]

    I believe one was up on 13th just off of Washington and the other down on Washington around 1st I think. Must be around 10 years ago.

  9. beamrider9 says:

    Just went to check out this place’s “comic book” side. Has all the new stuff, and a great selection of recent back issues – and I bought a lot of stuff (over $100) so they gave me 20% off! And all their new releases are bagged and boarded – a big plus for me, I can’t stand having to pick through the pile to find one that’s not dinged up. I’ll definitely be going back.

  10. seuss says:

    There used to be a comic book store on Washington and 8th. Great store – lots of stock. They were there when I moved in around ’87 but moved out a few years later.

  11. renfield says:

    [quote comment=”43391″]i’ve had two custom pieces made for my wife by these folks and they were MORE than expected. on one of the pieces she gets literally dozens of compliments almost everywhere she goes. i highly recommend them, especially if as 411 says, your tastes are beyond the standard stuff or, if you want something custom made. just bring in a picture and he’ll make it from wax, get your approval and make it.

    prices are VERY reasonable as well. two thumbs up for these guys.

    btw–i have zero affiliation with them but i am just very impressed with their work.[/quote]

    I have to agree – this place is awesome.
    I had an antique ring with an intricately carved pattern made larger to fit my hand at Traders of Babylon. I was anticipating just a plain bar of metal being put in – instead Steven copied the carving exactly! I was stunned when I went to pick the ring up. I am not affiliated with the store either, but like to recommend places that do great work here in town. The prices are fair and their work is great.

  12. Zark says:

    Traders of Babylon posts a sign indicating that they will buy gold. I presented them with a 14k gold ring and was offered $50. I declined, then took it to a reputable scrap gold buyer, and sold it for $142, almost three times as much.

    So, they may be fine jewelers, but I wouldn’t offer to sell them anything unless you feel like being cheated.

  13. whineanddineinhob says:

    I’m beginning to feel sorry for those down on their luck and entrusted these people with their gold and silver for cash.

  14. Frankie says:

    Those guys went from collecting comics to advocating bike lanes and eco-hype.

    • joey maxim says:

      prior to traders ,the owners mom,bought the old dairy queen and called it the magic

      fountain,on bloomfield st n 3rd….they fled from hungry in 1956….Later the son opened
      the traders store…..the more one researchs the more one finds.[quote comment=”217501″]Those guys went from collecting comics to advocating bike lanes and eco-hype.[/quote]

      • joey maxim says:

        This people came from a soviet occupied country and made a life in the United States.[quote comment=”217504″]prior to traders ,the owners mom,bought the old dairy queen and called it the magicfountain,on bloomfield st n 3rd….they fled from hungry in 1956….Later the son opened the traders store…..the more one researchs the more one finds.[/quote]

      • joey maxim says:

        its just a great thing that some people appricate the benifits of freedom.[quote comment=”217505″]This people came from a soviet occupied country and made a life in the United States.[/quote]

  15. joey maxim says:

    they are a good family.

  16. Marty J says:

    Traders was one of the best stores if not the best when it came to bringing culture to Hoboken. Especially when it operated out of 66 Willow, it had the oldest and most diverse collection of books I’ve seen around the NYC area. Making the trip there was one of my favorite things to do in town.

    I love professional life, the Hoboken bar scene, Sunday fundays, all of it. And I could always defend Hoboken against hipster bashers by pointing out it had the best goddamn comic store in the metro area. I was happy it held a place amongst all the other facets of entertainment. Now, I’m sad to say it’s gone.

  17. wfs4 says:

    Over the years I’ve bought many small jewellery items, best place (maybe the only place) to get watch batteries fitted. Once took a bracelet to be repaired, it had a broken clasp. The jewellery stores in Newport Mall wanted about $120+ to fit a new clasp, ‘Traders’ did it for $20. They’ll be missed.

    But on the bright side, maybe we’ll get an a new store offering something unique & special. Maybe another pizza shop, or a tanning salon, or maybe even another nail salon.

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