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Janet Nicoll - 1929-2019

Janet I. Nicoll died of cancer at home on September 16, 2019, with loved ones at her side. She was born on December 11, 1929, in Portland, Oregon, daughter of Raleigh D. and Isabelle (Petrie) Stark. She married G. Douglas Nicoll in Portland in 1953, the beginning of 66 loving years together. They moved to Boston, where her husband completed his graduate studies at Boston University in the fields of church history and Russian and Soviet history. In 1958, they moved to Beloit, Wisconsin, when Douglas joined the faculty of Beloit College.

Janet graduated from Willamette University in 1951 with a BA in English literature. She earned her teaching credentials in 1952 at Lewis & Clark College and then taught in Lake Grove, Oregon; Newton, Massachusetts; and Beloit, Wisconsin.

In Beloit, Janet, known for her intelligence and quick wit, was active in college and community affairs. She taught Sunday school and was a member of First Presbyterian Church, as well as singing in the chancel choir. She was a dedicated volunteer, as a poll worker and Democratic committee woman, president of the East End Club, president of Beloit College Faculty Wives, board member of the Volunteer Tutoring Service, board member and president of the Beloit Historical Society from 1989-1990, and member of the Beloit Commission for Historic Preservation from 1989-1995.

Her major hobby was collecting political campaign memorabilia, and she was well known for presentations about early political campaign songs. Janet and Douglas enjoyed travel to Europe, particularly Russia and Scotland, where they explored their shared ancestry.

In 1995, Dr. Nicoll retired from Beloit College and the Nicolls moved to McMinnville, Oregon. Janet became the family historian and, with the help of a childhood friend, meticulously traced both her and her husband’s family histories. She was very proud to be a member of the First Families of Ohio.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by cousins, nieces and nephews.

She is buried with her parents at Riverview Cemetery in Portland. No service is planned, though it would please Janet to be remembered at informal gatherings of family and friends. Memorial gifts may be made to the Beloit Historical Society, Beloit, Wisconsin; Mercy Corps; or a charity of your choice.

 

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