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Wisconsin Rural Electric Cooperative Association / First yearbook, 1938

Introduction: local cooperative histories,   pp. 33-49 PDF (4.3 MB)

Page 44

   characteristic of this group of people, who allowed no obstacles to stand
   in the way of fulfillment of their cooperative purpose.
      One of the first sections to become interested in REA electricity after
 the introduction of the program in Wisconsin was the very excellent farm
 territory in Rock, Jefferson and Walworth counties. A large cooperative
 was formed and incorporated under the name RoCK-JEFFERSON ELECTRIC
 COOPERATIVE ASsOCIATION. A temporary organization was also effected
 in neighboring Walworth county.
     The private utilities in the territory became very active, the Wisconsin
 Power and Light and the Wisconsin Gas and Electric. The latter named
 company reduced their rates to $4.00 for 80 KWH and abandoned their.
 assessment of construction cost charges. They also agreed to electrify the
 territory in which they could build, on an area basis. The farmers of
 Jefferson and Walworth accepted this proposition, but Rock County, in
 the Power and Light area continued to perfect their Cooperative and
 proceeded to organize according to the REA plan.
     On April 24, 1936, they incorporated under the name, ROCK COUNTY
 ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION. With a paid up membership roll
 of 1,200, they became one of the charter members of STATEWIDE, their
 President, Mr..Grant S. Rice being elected to its Board of Directors and
 to the office of Secretary-Treasurer. R. T. Glassco, County Agent, an active
 energetic leader in Rock County was also a participant at the meeting.
     Officers .and members of the present Rock County Board of Directors
                GRANT S. RICE, President, Milton
                H. A. HARIED, Vice-President, Edgerton
                W. J. FLORIN, Treasurer, Avalon
                J. B. DYBEVIK, Secretary, Brodhead
                ED. MAHLUM, Beloit
                EMMET YALE, Milton Junction
                RALPH MEECH, Beloit
                GEO. BALLMER, Janesville
                GEO. KoPpLwN, Janesville
     Monthly meetings are held by the Board, at the office of the Cooperative
at 101 East Milwaukee Street, Janesville.
    In December, 1936, H. M. Durnin, of the STATEWIDE office, started
staking crews, and made other preliminary arrangements as Resident
Engineer, preparatory to the construction work that was to be begun
shortly by the A. A. Electric Company of Cicero, Illinois.
    On July 15, 1937, the first 122 miles of line were energized. In
November the entire 402 miles were energized and service was being
rendered to 627 customers with an average of six new connections daily,
reaching 742 by December 31.
    To tersely state construction progress on this project is not giving
whole picture. The fighting spirit, adherence to principles, the courage,
the hard work and liberal sprinkling of patience necessary in overcoming
obstacles and keeping opposition at bay are the truer reasons why comple-

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