Niles

The Village of Niles has long been recognized for its leadership in the northwest suburbs. Comfortable homes, broad tree-lined streets, outstanding schools, excellent parks and community programs are sources of pride and pleasure for village residents. Niles successfully preserves the fine balance between a strong industrial and commercial base and the village’s residential population. As a result, natives and newcomers benefit from sound village economy, warm and inviting neighborhoods, and a wealth of products, services and employment opportunities. Niles is located in territory once inhabited by Indians who settled here about 1700. On August 20, 1835 a portion of land including Niles was purchased by the U.S. Government. In 1831, John and Katherine Ebinger, natives of Stuttgart, Germany, journeyed to America. Their intent was to set up a farm in the Chicago area. Finding the lake front land too swampy for farming, they traveled further north along the Indian trail toward Milwaukee. According to local legend, their horse stepped on a rattlesnake along the Niles border, and died shortly afterwards. Left without a horse, the Ebingers settled here and established a home and farm. On August 24, 1899, Niles was officially incorporated as a Village in the State of Illinois.

Unique to its community, Niles offers a free bus service at no charge to riders. The bus operates within the Village and stops at all major shopping centers and public facilities and within a short distance of every residence. Bus schedules can be picked up at the Village Hall and Chamber office. In conjunction with the free bus is one of the world’s most extensive public transit systems. Elevated electric trains, commuter trains, buses and multi-lane roadways are within walking distance.

Niles grew at a slow pace until the sixties, which produced unbelievable changes in the structure of the Village. Park and library districts were established; new fire and police stations were built; modern shopping locations were introduced; large industries located along Touhy Avenue and Howard Street. Finally, in 1965, the Village of Niles won the highly coveted “All American City Award.”

Schools:

School Address Phone Grade
Emerson School 8101 N Cumberland Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 318-8110 Elementary Schools
Emerson School 8101 N Cumberland Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 318-8110 Elementary Schools
Mark Twain Elementary School 9401 N Hamlin Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 296-5341 Elementary Schools
Nelson Elementary School 8901 N Ozanam Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 965-0050 Elementary Schools
Niles Elementary School S 6935 W Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 647-9752 Elementary Schools
Thomas Jefferson School 8200 W Greendale Ave, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 318-4212 Elementary Schools
Notre Dame High School 7655 W Dempster St, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 965-2900 High Schools
Clarence E Culver Middle Schl 6921 W Oakton St, Niles, IL 60714 (847) 966-9280 Middle Schools
Niles History

First to the area, in the early 1830’s, were German farmers. They occupied Dutchman’s Point which today is the area where Waukegan Road and Milwaukee Avenue meet. Two of the farmers, John Schadiger and Julius Perren, were the first to arrive and they were known for the unusual house they built. It had no windows and one door. The North Branch Hotel was built in 1837 by Benjamin Hall and John Marshall. The following year residents started the first schoolhouse.

In 1850, the township of Niles was formed. The town was centered at Milwaukee, Touhy, and Waukegan Avenues. By 1884 the town consisted of three churches, two hotels, two stores, one drugstore, three cemeteries, two schools, and one doctor’s office. When the village incorporated in 1899, the population was 500. The name of Niles is said to be taken from the nationally distributed Niles Register newspaper.

In the early 1900’s, immigrants were brought to the area from Chicago on the Chicago Surface Lines street railway. The population in the 1930’s reached 2,135, which included 800 Polish orphans from the St. Hedwig’s orphanage.

In 1932 Robert Ilg, inventor, industrialist and owner of Ilg Hot Air Electric Ventilating Company, later Ilg Industries, constructed a recreational park for his employees in Niles. Ilg worked in Chicago but his home was in Niles. He had two swimming pools installed and a water tower. The water tower was hidden behind a replica of Italy’s Leaning Tower of Pisa that was half its actual size. In 1960 the family gave part of the property to the Leaning Tower Young Men’s Christian Association. The restored tower is now a symbol of the community.

Niles is a community that is six square miles in size. There really isn’t a “downtown” area, but Milwaukee Avenue is considered its commercial center. In the 1950’s the village began construction on a commercial complex. The complex was named the Golf Mill Shopping Center and it was dedicated in 1959. By the year 1989 there were about 1,100 businesses in the village producing over $7 million in taxes. In the year 2000 Nile’s population reached 30,068 and more than 25% of these people were 64 or older. The residents have a choice of many services ranging from senior citizen centers to counseling services to 600 park district programs.

Niles Trivia & Fun Facts

Lester Gillis (a.k.a Baby Face Nelson) was unceremoniously dumped into a Niles cemetery after his death.

Birthplace of college basketball players Sead Odzic (USC Trojans) and Will Schober (Army Black Nights)

Elevation is 625 feet

Area historical tornado activity is 54% greater than the overall U.S. average.