Elmer

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Elmer is a name of Germanic British origin. The given name originated as a surname, a medieval variant of the given name Aylmer, derived from Old English æþel (noble) and mær (famous). It was adopted as a given name in the United States, "in honor of the popularity of the brothers Ebenezer and Jonathan Elmer, leading supporters of the American Revolution."[1] The name has fallen out of popular use in the last few decades and it is uncommon to find Elmers born after World War II. The name is common in the United States and Canada.

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  1. ^ Patrick Hanks and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of First Names (Oxford UP, 1990), p. 101.
  2. ^ The term first appeared in the March, 1971 issue of QST magazine's "How's DX" column by Rod Newkirk, W9BRD (now also VA3ZBB). Newkirk called them "the unsung fathers of Amateur Radio." While he probably was not trying to coin a term at the time, here's how Newkirk introduced "Elmer" in his column and, as it turned out, to the rest of the amateur radio world: "Too frequently one hears a sad story in this little nutshell: 'Oh, I almost got a ticket, too, but Elmer, W9XYZ, moved away and I kind of lost interest.'" Newkirk went on to say, "We need those Elmers. All the Elmers, including the ham who took the most time and trouble to give you a push toward your license, are the birds who keep this great game young and fresh."