We deliver newspapers and/or our shoppers' guide to all of Cass County and the Eastern portion of Berrien County, Mich. Our market includes Southwestern Michigan and Northwestern Indiana, including South Bend, Mishawaka, Granger and Elkhart, Ind.
Midwestern rolling farmland and the St. Joseph River valley.
annual temperature is 49 degrees Fahrenheit. In January, temperatures
range from an average low of 16 degrees to an average high of 30 degrees.
In July, temperatures range from an average low of 61 to an average high
of 84. Average annual precipitation is 36 inches, with an average relative
humidity of 83 percent at 7 a.m. and 68 percent at 7 p.m. Annual snowfall
averages 72 inches. The growing season lasts 158 days, with the last freeze
usually occurring in early May and the first usually occurring in early
October. During the year, the sun shines an average of 53 percent of the
daylight hours. Prevailing winds are from the southwest during both winter
The shallows of the St. Joseph River near Niles made it a good crossing
place for those traveling with substantial loads during the times North
America was being settled. Pioneers could cross the river here while following
the Great Sauk Trail, a trade route from the Mississippi into Montreal
In the early
1680s, Jesuit missionaries are said to have located a mission here, led
by Father Jean-Claude Allouez, and named in in honor of St. Joseph, their
patron saint. Later, the area is said to have been the site of a camp
manned by the French Colonial Army, known as Fort St. Joseph. Its exact
location and details about the fort remain a mystery.
it is assumed by many historians to have been located on the banks of
the St. Joseph River near those shallow areas at what would later become
Niles. As a result of the French and Indian War, British control of the
fort began in 1761.
In a skirmish
in 1781 with the Spanish, Spanish soldiers raided the fort in pre-dawn
hours and took it over, without firing a shot, and claimed the fort as
part of Spanish territory, though it remained such only briefly. American
settlers arrived in the Fort St. Joseph area in the 1820s and 30s.
known today as the city of four flags — French, British, Spanish and American.
The city was named by first three families credited with settling the
area — the Wallings, Justices and Laceys. They called it Niles, in honor
of Hezekiah Niles, a Baltimore newspaper publisher whose “Niles Weekly
Register” was popular in the early 1800s.
Niles Community Schools and Brandywine Public Schools serve the Greater
Niles area; St. Mary's Catholic School serves Niles' Catholic community
with grades kindergarten through sixth grade. Southwestern Michigan College,
Niles; Lake Michigan College, Niles; University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame,
Ind., and St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Ind. (located 8 miles south
of Niles); Indiana University at South Bend, Ind.; Andrews University,
Midwestern hospitality from good, unpretentious, hard-working people.
Abundant opportunities for the sportsman, including hunting and fishing
the St. Joseph River and its tributaries and Lake Michigan or the many
lakes of Cass and Berrien counties in Michigan. Each community has its
own well-developed organizations for youth sports, ranging from soccer
to baseball and softball to swimming and tennis through the Niles-Buchanan
Family YMCA. Outdoor winter sports include snowmobiling, cross-country
skiing and ice skating. Golf is ever popular, and available on a number
of public and private courses. A number of country clubs serve the Greater
Home of Ring Lardner; boyhood home of Dodge brothers of motorcar fame;
home of Tommy “James” Jackson of Tommy James and the Shondells, who were
famous for the song, “Mony, Mony”; boyhood home of Montgomery Ward and
site of his first retail store; every Simplicity Pattern ever made was
produce in Niles, Mich.
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