Edgar W. Schergens · 1977
Edgar W. Schergens (1906- ), educated in his native Tell City and at Evansville, first entered the world of communications as a partner in a picture show in silent film days. Studios then did not provide publicity releases and advertising layouts, so doing his own developed an interest in newspapering, and in 1928 he cast his lot with Uriah B. Cummings in The Tell City News. They later bought The Cannelton Telephone, changing its name to The Cannelton News. In time, Ed Schergens became sole proprietor. He made his newspapers the first weeklies in Indiana to have their circulation certified by ABC, and he was in the vanguard of Hoosier publishers in adopting modern production methods. He established one of the early central printing operations for small town newspapers. After selling his newspapers in 1972, he continued as editor for a year and remains as consultant and weekly columnist.
The Tell City News won honors as the best Republican and The Cannelton News, with the Democratic county chairman writing his editorials, as the best Democratic weekly. His profession recognized his leadership by election to the presidency of the Hoosier State Press Association, the Indiana Republican Editorial Association, and the National Editorial Association (now National Newspaper Association), representing America’s small town press. He continues as director of National Newspaper Foundation, which supports education for newspaper people. Long active in the Kentucky Press Association, he also is a member of Sigma Delta Chi, the Society for Professional Journalists.
Further professional recognition is the National Newspaper Association’s Amos Award and establishment by The Tell City News of an annual Schergens Journalism Scholarship in honor of Ed and his wife, Lucille, herself a long-time newspaperwoman.
Like all outstanding small town editors, Ed has shared leadership in the business and civic life of his community. That leadership resulted in revival of the woodworking industry for which Tell City had been noted and the attraction of new industries. A bank director and board chairman, he also served briefly as bank president. He is chairman of the Indiana Toll Bridge Commission.
A charter member of the Tell City Kiwanis Club, an early booster for establishing the Jaycees, active in the United Church of Christ, in Masonry, and in other organizations, he was named Jaycee’s Boss of the Year and, in 1973, Tell City’s Most Distinguished Citizen. Indiana has made him a Sagamore of the Wabash, and our neighboring state, a Kentucky Colonel.
With all his business and community activity he has found time to travel five times to Europe and to Africa, Australia, New Zealand, and the Far East, and times to play golf.