Dolle Nichols, 91, stands before the sign announcing the public hearing to discuss the fate of the namesake Nichols Library, which Nichols and others are pleading with the city to preserve.
- Courtesy of Gail Diedrichsen

Dolle Nichols, the 91-year-old great-granddaughter of Nichols Library founder James Nichols, plans to ask the Naperville City Council to stop plans to tear down the historic building he built. She is pictured with "The Business Guide," a book he wrote.
- Courtesy of Gail Diedrichsen

Truth Lutheran Church bought the old Nichols Library from the city of Naperville in the 1990s.
- Bev Horne | Staff Photographer


By Dolle Nichols
Special to the Daily Herald

Editor’s note: Dolle Nichols is the 91-year-old wife of the grandson of Naperville teacher, author and businessman James Lawrence Nichols, after whom Naperville’s first library was named. She plans to ask the city council tonight Tuesday to preserve the 119-year-old building at 110 S. Washington St. rather than allow it to be converted into four stories of shops, offices and condos. Nichols intends to read the essay below to the city council.

For years, each child in Naperville visited the Nichols Library in 2nd and 4th grade. They were told a story. It was hoped the story would inspire a love for books and encourage their desire to learn. But most important, the story was to help them realize anything is possible IF you try hard enough. I'd like to share the story.


by Marie Wilson

Naperville's first library is no longer a haven for books, but a relative of the man whose donation established it says it still has great value as part of the city's legacy.

Dolle Nichols, great-granddaughter of library benefactor James Lawrence Nichols, got a bit teary as she read an essay Tuesday to the Naperville City Council, begging members to "maintain and respect our past so we may truly appreciate our future."