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A quick question
Is this side of the forums for fiction writers or are there any history buffs that would be willing to take look at bits and pieces of my book for feedback?
Here's a cut and paste of the preface to give you an idea as to what my book will be about -
"Books have been written about the various facets of the electric utility industry (power plants, transmission lines, etc.) and about the three investor-owned utilities serving North Dakota, but this book hopes to provide a glimpse into the past when almost every town had its own light plant. Also, the timelines of some earlier ‘high-line’ companies that became the foundation of the electric utility ‘grid’ in North Dakota today will also be documented in this book.
The author has had a lifelong fascination with electricity and power lines, going back to his childhood days attending school in Devils Lake and Minot. This interest eventually led to a collection of old insulators from power and communications lines. Later on, the author also became interested in taking pictures of old or interesting power lines. A chance conversation with a fellow insulator collector (the late Mike Parker) about one picture led to some ongoing discussion of various power companies, first focusing on their construction standards, and eventually focusing on their history, and this conversation continued until his passing in 2012.
The author was soon inspired to research the power companies serving North Dakota, initially focusing on Otter Tail Power Co., since they have the largest service area of all the present-day electric utilities in the state. As research continued on piecing together the timelines for the various towns on Otter Tail Power’s system, information on the towns served by the other two investor-owned utilities was accumulated and, later still, on towns served by municipal utilities and electric cooperatives.
However, this book does not cover every single town in North Dakota. All of the towns served by the three investor-owned utilities are included and so are those served by municipal utilities. When it came to the towns currently served by electric cooperatives, it became necessary to develop some criteria for inclusion in order to keep the town list to a manageable size." (470+ towns - from Abercrombie to Zeeland)
And a sample town history -
"Egeland (founded 1905) / Otter Tail Power
Peter Filskov owned the local McCormick-Deering implement dealership, and in August 1918, he was granted a franchise to install a light plant. The Egeland Light, Heat, & Power Co. DC light plant was installed in a garage at his dealership. The plant ran from dusk to 11:30 PM and Monday and Wednesday mornings for laundry, and used a special clock to shut down the plant automatically at the end of the day. The residents petitioned the North Dakota Board of Railroad Commissioners in February 1925 to have Filskov run the plant 18 or even 24 hours.
After an investigation, the railroad commission ordered the plant to run from 6 AM to midnight, set the rate at 25 cents per kWh, and directed that the generators be repaired so they could run in tandem. Otter Tail Power Co. bought the plant in January 1927 and continued operating it until their transmission line through the area was completed in late summer. The distribution system was then converted to AC and connected to the system in September."
I don't have a preview ready of the book yet, as I am heading back up to North Dakota for another research trip later this month to hopefully find more information to finalize as many of the town histories before drawing a line and preparing to publish what I have.