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Elmer, Missouri - Early History
Elmer's New Water System
(article in the Macon Chronicle Hearld, 1961)
In impressive ceremonies, the new Elmer municipal water system - several years in the planning - was dedicated Sunday afternoon. At the program, Mayor Herman Spencer in his introduction of the ceremony, said "This is the long-looked-for hour. With anticipation, we have looked forward to this dedicaton." Then he introduced the members of the board of aldermen: Willis Sevits and Leonard Herrin of the west ward and P.F. Wigal and Newton L. Haney of the east ward. Also introduced were former board members Kenneth Elliott and William Overstreet, who was mayor when the water plant plans were started.
Planning of this improvement has been under way since 1956. At that time Willis Lee of E.T. Archer and Co. and Harry Holbrook of Parker-Purcell Co., both of Kansas City, met with the town board, which was composed at that time of William Overstreet, mayor; Ora Thurman, Delbert Thompson, Herman Spencer and Willis Sevits, clerk. The meeting was held to discuss the possibility of a water system for Elmer. Various meetings were held in the interim, but it was not until May of 1959 that progress became concrete.
At that time, the town board consisted of William Overstreet, mayor, Edgar Thurman, Kenneth Elliott, Paul Lene and Willis Sevits. An election was held at which time the voters of Elmer approved the change from Village to Fourth Class City. This was on January 26, 1960.
Following another change in the council, it was decided with the help of qualified engineers that a $65,000 bond issue would be adequate for a water system.
On August 6, 1960, the first of five elections was held and only one-half of the bond proposition, the authorization of revenue bonds, was approved by the voters. It still remained for four other elections to be held before tax levy bonds could be approved by voters. On May 13, 1961, this finally came to pass, and construction on the project was completed early this spring.
The new water plant is now in operation in Elmer and gives the people of that community another step forward in health services. At the dedication services, Bro. Epperson of the Assembly of God church, Danny Camp, pastor of the Christian church, and Eldon Johnson, pastor of the Baptist church, took part. A tour of the newly completed water plant followed the ceremony.