July 18, 2017
BROCKWELL — To tell the story of North Arkansas Electric Cooperative is to also tell the story of how electricity came to rural counties like Fulton, Sharp and Izard almost 80 years ago.
The Izard County Historical and Genealogical Society recently got to hear that history through a presentation by NAEC marketing and communications director Tori Moss.
Moss said NAEC has its roots in President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s executive order creating the Rural Electrification Administration. FDR did this to address a disparity in the distribution of electricity that saw many rural areas left behind.
This disparity was one that saw 90 percent of urban dwellers having electricity by 1930 compared to only 10 percent of rural dwellers. The private utility companies, who supplied most of the nation’s electric power, argued that it was too expensive to string electric lines to isolated rural farmsteads. They also argued that most people who lived in those areas, like farmers, were too poor to be able to afford electricity.
The Roosevelt administration believed that if private enterprise would not supply electricity to those people, then it was the government’s duty to do so.
Read the rest here: https://guardonline.com/?p=243007