About Us

The Niles Historical Society (NHS) was chartered in 1971.

We are based at the Niles Historical & Cultural Center (NHCC) in Niles, Illinois, which is open to visitors year-round with no cost for admission. Our funding for programs, exhibits, collections care, and research comes from donations.

Our building was formerly the Cook County Sheriff’s Police Department’s Station #1 from 1923 until they closed in 1984. Located at 8970 North Milwaukee Avenue, the building is one of the oldest municipal structures in Niles and a local landmark.

On March 25, 1985 the Society’s artifacts were moved from the hallway at the Trident Center, formerly located at 8060 West Oakton Street, to the new Niles Historical Museum at 8970 North Milwaukee Avenue. The Grand opening and dedication of the museum was on October 25, 1986. The event was attended by village dignitaries, guests, and members of the Niles V.F.W. Memorial Post 7712. At the dedication, the Museum was presented with its first flag. It was noted that our new facility far exceeded the original location, with three floors for exhibiting artifacts, an auditorium for programing and space for collections storage.

The NHCC Staff

  • Barb Karawacki, Museum Coordinator, bk@vniles.com
  • Dan Smaczny, Curator, dsmaczny@vniles.com

The NHS Board

  • Thomas Ferraro, President
  • Mark Thoms, 1st Vice President
  • Ronald Strzelecki, Jr., 2nd Vice President
  • Paul Zafiropoulos, Treasurer
  • Katie Schneider, Secretary
  • Jaymi Blickhahn, Director

If you are interested in becoming a board member, please contact us to discuss requirements and responsibilities by emailing nhs@vniles.com or call (847) 390-0160.

Get in touch

8970 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Niles, IL 60714