Story of a century, 1848-1948 : Manitowoc County during Wisconsin's first hundred years
Allie, Alfred O.
Communications, pp. 70-79 PDF (3.3 MB)
MANITOWOC COUNTY, WIS. 100 years of Wisconsin statehood. A few taverns and business places in the two cities have in- stalled receiving facilities. Hen- ry Hunsader, residing north of Manitowoc, was one of the first county farmers to avail himself of the television service. This communication infant of the 1 9 4 0 s promises revolutionary cnanges in We teld of communi- cation with the opening of the second century of Wisconsin's statehood Whether it will make telephone, telegraph, and radio methods of communicating as obsolete as sending messages by smoke signals will be watched with interest. Manitowoc Electric The electric utility, probably the most important industry in the city, is indeed the lifeblood of the community. This, the larg- est municipal utility in the state, was begun in 1885, just a few years aftei the first generating plant was built in the United States. On Jan. 2, 1914, the city purchased the electricity utility from John Schuette for $146,000, the plant having then a capacity of 700 kilowatts. From earnings from the time of purchase, the plant has become a $3,585,000 asset, as well as con- tributing to the general fund of the city over $1,000,000. The municipal utilities of Manitowoc, while one of the biggest taxpay- ers in the city, offers its users the lowest rates in the state. From 700 kilowatts in 1914, the power plant has grown to a ca- pacity of 20,000 kilowatts, soon to be increased to 30,000 kilo- watts upon the installation of another generator now on order. In 1914, the utility generated 1,272,000 KWH of electricity; in 1947, 48,883,889 KWH. An inc- rease of 20 per cent in 1948 over 1947 is contemplated. As of Jan. 1, 1948, there were 9,525 cus- tomers, 94 miles of pole lines, and over 500 miles of wire in the dis- tribution system within the city limits. The streets of Manitowoc are lighted by over 1400 units. Water System The water utility, started in 1889 arid purchased oy the city in 1911 for $250,000 has present as- sets of over $1,819,000. The city of Manitowoc has one of the fin- est types of water supply. The venture of installing the first so- called horizontal wells proved successful, and Manitowoc is one of the few cities in the country having a supply far in excess of its present requirements. One of the new horizontal wells is located in Silver Creek park (capacity 10,800,000 gallons per day). 'The other well is in Lake Michigan (capacity 5,000,- 000 gallons per day). There is also a 11 million gallon overhead water storage reservoir at Eighth street and Reed avenue, and a 3,000,000 gallon underground res- ervoir at South Seventh and Co- lumbus stieets. The city has its own bacterial laboratory, but sends samples weekly to the state board of health's laboratory for the customers' protection. Over 383,000 feet of water main under the city streets serves 5,600 customers. For general city fire protection there are 490 fire hydrants. Gallons of w a t e r pumped increased from over 3,- 000,000 in 1911 to over 1,000,000,- 000 gallons in 1947. The quality of the water is without doubt one of the finest in this territory. Manitowoc Gas Company The history of the Wisconsin Fuel and Light company in Man- itowoc dates from 1901 when sale of gas and its by-products was begun. The city council granted a franchise to Henry Vits, Emil Teitgen, Julius Lindstedt, and Michael Dempsey of Manitowoc incorporated under the name of Manitowoc Gas Light company. They built the plant on North Tenth street and laid mains of various sizes to a total of 263 customers. The Manitowoc concern in 1907 75 STORY OF A CENTURY f
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