Elm Street Portion in Winchester To Be Named After Well-Known Area Journalist

By Benjamin Cox on March 17, 2023 at 3:33pm

Elmer Fedder (Courtesy of Airsman-Hires.com)

Winchester is soon to have its Elm Street confusion sorted out.

The city has been working to avoid the confusion of multiple Elm Streets that run parallel to each other near the high school and elementary school.

After rescinding an ordinance last month to rename one of the Elm Streets to Lincoln Street that runs adjacent to the Winchester School District, the city council agreed last week to renaming a residential section of Elm Street after a prominent citizen who passed away at the end of February. The school district had brought both legal and financial implications to the city council last month with the renaming of the street.

Mayor Rex McIntire explains that his renaming will only deal with a residential portion of one of the Elm Streets that doesn’t have any homes on it: “We did lose a prominent citizen. Elmer Fedder used to the run the newspaper here, the Winchester Times, for over 40 years. He was very active in local affairs and was a big supporter of our community. He and his wife Merrilyn both are important people to this area and are just good citizens. We decided to name the section from Cross up to Cherry Street, which is Illinois Route 106 to name it Fedder Street. The idea to name it that came about just days after he passed away, after we had been brought the issues of renaming the street by Superintendent Kevin Blankenship. We decided it would be a nice way to honor Mr. Fedder by naming that section of Elm Street after him.”

Elmer Fedder was a Korean War veteran, and upon his discharge from the Army, began working in the newspaper business at the Troy Tribune and then the Metamora Herald before moving to Winchester where he took over publication of the Winchester Times, the White Hall Register-Republican, the Greenfield Argus, and the Roodhouse Record. Fedder was active in the area community, serving in Kiwanis as a 50-year member, the Scott County Development group, the Passavant Area Hospital Board, the Board of Directors of First State Bank, as well as work with the Illinois Press Association. Fedder also mentored several area high school students in both written and photojournalism.

McIntire says the street renaming honors both Elmer and his wife Merrilyn, who survives him. Mrs. Fedder remains active on several boards and organizations in the Winchester community.