Waynedale Annexed, June 1957
Editors Note: This article was found in The Waynedale News archives. The writer is unknown.
The 1956 election was a sweep of the Republicans in the County and State. Harold Handley was elected governor and all the seats in Allen County remained with the Republicans. E. Ross Adair, Fourth District Congressman, defeated Democrat challenger F. Dean Bechtol by a margin of wide proportion district-wise. A factor in the landslide victory was the election of President Dwight Eisenhower over Adlai Stevenson by more than two-to-one in Allen County.
Early in 1957 the move to annex Waynedale, in the talking stages for some years, took a positive turn. On June 25th, 1957, the Fort Wayne City Council voted unanimously in favor of the annexation ordinance. The measure meant the taking of 5.27 square miles of the southwest area and the boosting of the City population by nearly 6,000 persons. There was just one dissenting note at the council session. Charles Churchward, who said he was a friend of the late Abner Elzey, founder of the Waynedale community, told the councilman, “I don’t see this council has done anything to be proud of.” Churchward said, “it was Elzey’s dream that the community eventually be incorporated.” He charged that proponents of the annexation plan were “newcomers to Waynedale who have had practically nothing to do with making a town out of it.”
The Waynedale Civic Association, headed by Max Farrell, had opposed the annexation for more than a year during the study stage. Farrell was instrumental in having a poll conducted among Waynedale residents in early 1957 on the questions of town incorporation or annexation to Fort Wayne. Farrell’s group indicated they would be guided by the decision of the majority of voters.
Results of the poll announced in February showed 723 in favor of annexation and 633 in favor of incorporation.
THE NAMING OF WAYNEDALE
Waynedale, the largest unincorporated community in Allen County, is the dream of a man to have a community in which anyone could build a home to his own design and enjoy suburban life.
This unincorporated town of approximately 5,000 residents, situated approximately six miles southwest of Fort Wayne on State Roads #1 and #3, was founded February 15, 1921 by the late Abner Elzey.
The founder, on a cold December day in 1920, while standing at the southeast corner of the Lower Huntington Road and the present Old Trail Road, pointed to the southwest toward the James Cunnison farmland and proclaimed it an “ideal location” for a community. The town built on the location and it’s surrounding area, stands as a memorial today to Mr. Elzey. Naming the community was difficult. At first, Mr. Elzey had intended to name the community after his only daughter, Ilowdale. But this idea was dropped. But since those living in this area spoke of Fort Wayne as “Wayne,” he chose that as part of the name, using the name of his son, Dale as the other.