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Shattuck, S. F., et. al (ed.) / A history of Neenah
(1958)

The 1890's,   pp. 57-[66] PDF (2.2 MB)


Page 57


                   THE 1890's
WHEN ONE THINKS in perspective of the '90s, there comes
            into view the worst depression and money panic the
            country had ever known. Neenah, because of the nature
            and conduct of its industry, fared better than the aver-
age, as it has in subsequent economic dips.
  We think, too, of strained relations with Spain, and the sinking of
the battleship "Maine" in Havana harbor that plunged us into the
Spanish-American War and set the stage for America as a world
power.
Struggle for Interurban Service
  Nearer home was feverish activity on the part of Milwaukee
capitalists to put through an electric trolley line from Fond du Lac
to Green Bay, utilizing the trackage rights of the Menasha and
Neenah Railway Company,-only to be blocked for two years by
refusal of the Councils of the Twin Cities to permit such use of their
streets. The attitude of the local governing bodies reflected the fear
of Neenah-Menasha merchants that trade, now theirs, would flow to
the larger cities to the south and to the north.
  In 1891 the Appleton Electric Street Railway, after a brave but ill-
starred existence, folded up, as did the Appleton Edison Electric
Company in 1894.
  In spite of financial failures, there were those like A. L. Smith who
had faith in the future of electric power, and eventually their faith
was vindicated. In the early 19oo's the Wisconsin Traction, Light,
Heat & Power Company, and their successor, the Wisconsin Michigan
Power Company, took over. These two companies have furnished
industries and home owners of our city with efficient and unbroken
service.
57


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