The Law & Mediation Office of Lorna Jaynes is located in beautiful and historic downtown Niles. Legally part of Fremont, California, the village of Niles is separate in time and space and spirit.
Niles was established in the 1850′s as a railway junction for the Southern Pacific Railroad between Oakland and San Jose. Run by water conducted in a long flume from Alameda Creek, Vallejo’s Mill in Niles was the first flourmill in the US. And in 1884 the 500-acre California Nursery Company, which became the largest nursery in the west, made its home in Niles.
The Essanay Film Company, owned by Gilbert M. “Broncho Billy” Anderson and his partner George Spoor, opened the Essanay West studio in Niles in 1912. Many Broncho Billy cowboy adventures and Chaplin movies were filmed in and around Niles, including The Tramp, with its iconic image of Charlie Chaplin walking through Niles Canyon. This movie history is nourished and preserved today by the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum located on the former site of the Niles Essanay Studios where Broncho Billy and Charlie Chaplin made films so many years ago. Every Saturday night for $5 you can see the early silent films with top-notch live piano accompaniment. The Museum also hosts the annual Broncho Billy Silent Film Festival and Chaplin Days.
The Niles Canyon Railway operates historic trains between Sunol and Niles, and the Niles Depot Historical railroad museum and passenger depot. Together they provide a living connection to the history of our railroads. The trains run year-round between Sunol and Niles, and not to be missed is the beautiful Christmas train decorated with thousands of sparkling lights inside and out.
Today Niles celebrates its history and eclectic present with a myriad of events and activities. The biggest is the annual Flea Market and Antique Fair that just celebrated its 50th anniversary, where about 5,000 folks come to town to shop at the yard sales held in the front yard of almost every home in town and the antique vendors that line the main street.
Other attractions and events include the many historic buildings such as Joe’s Corner, Munoz Hall, consignment, antique and art shops, the Florence bar, Shinn pond and the dog party place on the Alameda Creek Trail, Quarry Lakes, the Devil’s Workshop, the secret sidewalk, the beautiful town plaza next to the historic Train Depot where many concerts and musical events are held, the Mudpuddle Shop (best music venue around), the annual Day of the Dead Altar Walk, car shows, a weekly farmers market and fine coffee and dining establishments.