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Who We Are

O’Gara and Wilson traces its lineage back to the late nineteenth century, when  Thomas Hewitt founded the original bookshop in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. Hewitt ran the store for several years before selling to Vernor Woodworth. Woodworth’s became a well-known establishment where generations of University of Chicago professors and students did their book buying. Woodworth's was eventually purchased by long-time Chicago bookseller Joseph O’Gara, who had served his apprenticeship with Jerry Nedwick. A true bookman, Mr. O’Gara, along with his pipe and his cat, Lady Jane Grey, and his apprentice Doug Wilson, made the store into what Saul Bellow once called the best bookstore in America. We are proud to be the current chapter of an ongoing story as we move the shop to Chesterton, Indiana, a small town near the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore with a long history of its own, including having been the home of an O'Gara & Wilson bookshop back in the 1990s. 

Doug Wilson

The current owner of the store, Doug Wilson began his career as a book scout, selling to Mr. O'Gara in order to fund his own book-buying "habit". O'Gara quickly recognized his eye for books, and Wilson soon rose from apprentice to an integral part of the store. Now he, along with his wife Jill, proudly carry on the grand tradition of used bookselling.


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