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Mt. Pulaski , Illinois
July 13, 1961     Times
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July 13, 1961

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---SIL.TENNIAL EDITION (Timu.News. Mr. Pulaski, IlL) THURSDAY, JULY 13, 1961 Elect icity C to Th C'ty B ck i 1 r ame e i a n I. H. SNYDER ERECTED ONE OF FIRST HUGE BOILER ONCE HELPED SUPPLY ELECTRICITY ELECTRIC PLANTS IN CEN. ILLINOIS Local Venture Taken Over in 1931 By C I E and Gas The history of electric service in Mount Pulaski goes back to the spring of 1891, when I. H. Snyder erected an electric plant -- one of the first in central Ill- inois -- on the site of an old mill on South Washington Street. Snyder's enterprise was the forerunner of the Mount Pulaski Electric Light, Heat and Power Co., which came into being in 1913 and operated until the pur. chase March 1, 1927, by the Ill- inois Public Utility Co. The fat. ter company adopted its present name, Central Illinois Electric and Gas Co., on February 13, 1931, and still provides electric service to the community. While pioneering aspects of the Snyder electric plant won public admiration, the business itself' was plagued by litigation which ! finally forced the owner to dis- pose of his holdings, according to Snyder's daughter, Mrs. Edna S. Ginther, 112 Hudson Street, Lin- coln. When the South Washington Street electric plant was erected, some of the construction mater- ials were salvaged from the old mill on the site. Since the source of the mill's water supply was a block away, on city property, Snyder negotiated a 20-year a. greement with the city to meet the water requirements of the electric plant, and a pipeline was laid from the mill to the well, While operating the electric plant, Snyder was also supply- ing water to the old P. D. & E. Railroad and the Illinois Central Railroad. The water supply was not sufficient, however, and Snyd- er hired a company from St. Louis to increase the depth of the well. Mount Pulaski's city water well was situated across the street from the well which was supply- ing Snyder's water needs, and its proximity led some members of the city council to contend that Snyder was reducing the city water supply. A lawsuit result- ed, the franchise was repudiated in the courts, and Snyder was forced to sell. Wt md Veail New Owners Clarence E. West's father pur- chased the plant and operated it with his son. Ira Veail, president, and Clar- ence E. West, secretary-treasurer were the first officers of the Mount Pulaski Electric Light, Heat and Power Co., which was chartered May 7, 1913. The an- nual report of the company for the year ending June 30, 1914, showed physical assets of $63,620 and operating revenues of $5,983. At that time, the company was purchasing its coal -- Lincoln and Springfield screenings -- at a cost of $1.50 per ton, and had 349 meters in service in Mount Pul- aski and Kenney. A year later the company had increased its meters in service to 477, and was providing service to Chestnut and Latham as well as Mount Pulaski and Kenney. Rates Only 75c Minimum Records show hat on Septem- ber 1, 1916, the monthly mini- mum residential rate of the Mount Pulaski Electric Light, Heat and Power Co. was 75 cents, and that the rate range was from 10 to 15 cents per kilowatt hour, depending on usage. From a peak of $6.60 more than 40 years ago, the cost of  kilo- watt hours of electric service in, Mount Pulaski declined to $6.30 in 1929 and to $3.29 in 1961. The cost of 100 kilowatt hours went from $11.60 in 1916 to $10.30 in 1929 and to $4.95 in 1961. On May 28, 1925, the Mount Pulaski Electric Light, Heat and Power Co., was serving 850 custo. reefs, including 16 rural users in Mount Pulaski, Chestnut, Ken. hey and Latham. The steam elec. trle generating station then in sorvlee included an engine and boiler room of brick construction with composition roofing. The stack, of brick construction, was 8 feet square at its base, 65 feet high, and 4 1!3 feet square at the top. There were two Brownell and one Frost horizontal fire tube boilers, each of 150 horsepower capacity. The plant also included three steam engines belted to Westinghouse A.C. generators. In late 1925 and early 1926, a 13,000.volt electric transmission line was built from the Lincoln generating station to Mount Pul- aski. The Mount Pulaski generat- ing station was maintained in op- erating condition on a standby basis until 1944, when all of the equipment was junked and the brick building sold. In 1949, electric load increase caused the original 13,800-volt transmission line to be supple- mented with a 34,500-volt line. At the same time, sub-station capac- ity was increased considerably. Last year, the main feeders ex- tending east and west from Mt. Pulaski, were rebuilt to much heavier capacity, and conversion of the town distribution system from 2,400-volts to 12,500-volts was started, to be continued as conditions warrant. Street lighting in Mount Pul- aski now consists of 17 20,000. lumen mercury vapor lamps with ornamental standards, 100 center suspension or mast arm brackets with 100.watt or 200-watt lamps, and eight 60-watt alley lamps. The Mount Pulaski district of Central Illinois Electric and Gas Co. now provides electric service to 1,925 customers, including 545 rural users, in Mount Pulaski, Chestnut, Kenney, Latham, Corn- land and Lake Fork. Clarence E. West, one of the two former owners of the Mount Pulaski Electric Light, Heat and i Power Co., remained with the i present company as Mount Pul. aski district manager until his i retirement in May, 1931. C. E. West's son, Gordon (Red) West, now deceased, formerly was an electric service man in Mount Pulaski. C. L. (Pete) Mason, who later became line supervisor for Central Illinois Electric and Gas Co. in Rockford and is now in re- tirement in Tennessee, is a form. er Mount Pulaski electric line- man. In more recent years, two Mount Pulaski residents, Morrell Deibert and Elmer (Dad) Meister, have played important roles in maintaining electric service to Mount Pulaski district customers. Both were empl6yed by the com- pany in September, 1927. Meister retired in February, 1956, and Deibert is still with the company as a service man. Former utility company office employees in Mount Pulaski in- clude Mrs. Frances Gunterin Waddell, of Decatur; Mrs. Lillian Ey Hutchcraft, St. Louis, Me.; Mrs. Lucy Jane Ellis Mirshak, Niles, Ill.; Mrs. Geri Wible Zim- mermann of Mount Pulaski, and Mrs. Jean Guffey Haynes of Mount Pulaski, who is now em- ployed in the Lincoln office of Central Illinois Electric and Gas Co. Other Mount Pulaski residents who have been identified with the electric utility business, al- though not in the community it- self, include the late Charles H. Woods, who was superintendent of the electric plant in Lincoln for many years prior to 1929; and J. C. Goddard, who is now employed in the Lincoln meter department of Central Illinois Electric and Gas Co. ZIM'S SUPER MARKET OPENED DEC. 13, 1956 (Dec. 13, 1956) Zim's Super Market will hold its grand opening on Friday and Saturday of this week, at their new home on Route 121 in the northeast part of Mount Pulaski. The new business establishment Light Plant Is Dismantled (Nov. 9. 1944) Back in 1885 the big flour mill located in the same block as the Illinois Central station, was de- stroyed by fire, and the ruins re- an electric light plant, giving Mt. Pulaski electric light service as one of the first small cities in Illinois. About 1898 Mr. Snyder sold the property to Ira Veail and Clar- ence E. West. They continued to operate the plant until Mar. 1927, when they sold out to Central This company haas nl .'l.|lil'ql' plant in Lincoln _, i IIIL ' several cities and to ,he ,,I ,'.-_' ThUS '- v _ part of Illinois. --jlL+ plant was closed dt;'or ';'1 ' machinery kept inta lk. ency purpses" about 19 )'ears, f" +t r- /|  _ mained there until 1891, when on this same site, I. H. Snyder built Local Elec.tric Plant Furm .shes Kenney "Jmce" Public Utilities Co., now known undergoing the as the Central Illinois Electric dismantling. __ i Now We Understand !  t Capt. Gee..00 We now understand why John . "Jack" Gordon, manager of the Headed D e00m" Central Illinois ElectrL and Gas Co. division, out of Lincoln, and Gren|e (January 2;3, 1914) Friday afternoon of last week the electric "juice" from Mt. Pul- aski was turned into the veins and arteries of the Kenney light- ing system. For the present, the old wiring will be used just as it has been heretofore but as more settled weather comes the new company promises to rewire the town and put the street lights on a separate circuit from the com. mercial account and that at present the lights will be run from sundown until sunrise each night. So, until the rewiring is done, Kenney will have all night service, both street and com- mercial. A few comparisons between the old system and the new may not be out of place. The old primary circuit carried 1100 volts--the new 2200. The old globes were 110, 112, and 115 volt lights---the new 105, 108, and 110. In order to get best lights it will be necessary for customers to change the 110 volt globes. The old maximum price for service was 20 cents per kilowatt hour--the new 15 cents. The company is installing a double outfit at the Mt. Pulaski plant in order to be equipped for emergencies--so that when one equipment needs temporary repairs, the other can be used to give continuous service. As soon as the two circuits are put into service we will be sup- i plied with electric light and pew. er continuously throughout the 24 hours of the day and night. J. S. Byerly will continue to be employed by the new company for the present. --Kenney Gazette-Herald which was built this summer, is a +mammoth building filled with much larger array of groceries and meats than had been carried in the former location uptown. Extensive vegetable and meat re- frigerated open-air display cases add much to the appearance and service to be offered. Visitors to Mount Pulaski will find the city filled with gra- cious hosts and hostesses. Our folks have always had a fine rep- utation for friendliness and this occasion will fully prove it. now vice-president of the com. pany at Rockford, has always had a warm spot in his heart for Mount Pulaski. Jack's grandfather, John Gor- don, after completing the build- ing of the Shellabarger Flour Mill in Decatur, moved his fam- ily to Mount Pulaski, where he built another flour mill. His fath- er, Frank Gordon, grew up in Mount Pulaski and always spoke of the man)" pleasant memories he had of his boyhood here. S00rm Buggies In Demand Back In Years 1913-14 John W. Mayer & Son, the south side Vehicle and Harness dealers, say the storm buggy business still continues. They report the following recent sales: Henry Donnan, Chestnut, two. seated closed storm rig. Sam Hanselman, Latham, En. terprise storm buggy. Roy Moore, Studebaker storm buggy. Andy Rogers, Henny storm buggy. Albert Rentmeister, Page storm buggy. W. B. Wilkerson, Page storm buggy. A. S. Pool, Studebaker buggy. Joe Miller, Enterprise storm buggy. Special prices on buggies and carriages in order to make room for spring stock. A few extra good bargains In secondhand buggies and carriag- es. Bring in your harness and have them repaired and oiled before the rush of spring work. adv. John W. Myers & Son. NON-PAYING TFAIcr SAYS, "ROOF LEAI" (Juae 22, 1939) Many years ago the late George Vonderlieth owned a pro- perty on South Vine Street, a-! cross the street west from the old coal shaft, the place now being occupied by James Ellenberg. For a long time Charley Loubough lived there, and he seldom paid his rent. One day he went to the wind mill factory and told Mr. Vonderlieth that the (july 25, The Decatur under the P. Zeiss, later a resident, was an interesting storY. "In the ned to have 6-ft. tall, but whi Oae big men, the d to be lowered to es, to get enough company. "The company catur's three of whom leaders in the company was tractive wore swords and carried musket er the state "On Dec. 31, diets, or Decatur group was banded. The tom part of, or Illinois State M!i National Guards- Mover to The above to mind the fact Zeiss left and located in forming a man S. merchandise Zeiss and building was side of the Centennial crated a big ,rm was known this part of In Mount called Captain lived on the t part of the Tomlinsen property was seaped, and the kinds and the m ways caused comment. roof leaked so didn't have it have to move say, Mr. hearty laugh saw to it at was properly The old days on Friday of the an old.fashioned