Dr. James R. Nicholson
James R. Nicholson (better known as Doc) was born in Melrose, NM in 1919. He served in World War 2 and received a Purple Heart. After the war, he attended the Illinois College of Optometry. He graduated and began practicing optometry in Santa Fe in 1950 and retired in 1988. Even while practicing optometry he discovered his love for making jewelry becoming prolific in that endeavor in the 1970's. After retiring, he opened an antique and jewelry store on Palace Avenue simply calling it "'The Store", selling the silver jewelry that he began making many years before. He always admired the local Native American culture and their gift of jewelry making and, ironically, Doc found out many years later that he was one quarter Choctaw Indian himself, a fact that pleased him very much. He made special pieces for two New Mexico governors and has been written up in several magazines including a southwestern art magazine in California. All his designs are very unique and most interesting. Doc was making jewelry up until his passing in December 2000.