Red River Valley Rural Power (S5038)


Historical Sketch

The documents and interviews in this collection were assembled to provide background on the development of electrical power in the rural areas of northwest Minnesota and portions of North Dakota. Much of the rural power in this area was first provided under the aegis of the Rural Electrification Administration. Beginning in the late 1940s, power was provided to many of the small towns and farms in the region by the building of local power cooperatives with REA assistance. The interview transcripts, pamphlets, and other records in the collection trace the development of several such cooperatives.

Collection Description

The core documents of the collection are the transcripts of interviews with individuals who were involved in the creation and administration of rural power cooperatives in eastern North Dakota and western Minnesota. These individuals discuss their Miscellaneous careers and their experiences, in the process providing a good overview of how electrical power was brought to these rural areas. The remainder of the collection consists of a variety of published booklets and pamphlets, some press releases and miscellaneous documents, as well as a video tape about the creation of Minnkota Power, one of the largest cooperatives in the region. All materials are in excellent condition.  


Box 1

  • Miscellaneous
  • Publications
    • Milton R. Young Station
    • Minnkota Power Cooperative, Inc. History. 1983
    • Minnkota’s Beginning
    • Otter Tail Power Company: From Its Origin through 1954. 1955
    • Power Over People. 1973
    • The Power People: The Story of Otter Tail Power Company by Ralph S. Johnson. 1987
    • Reflections: Andrew Freeman, 1909-1996. 1996
    • Thirty-Five Years with Minnkota
  • Video, The Man Who Made Minnkota: Andrew L. Freeman. 1996
  • Web Page Printouts


 Outside of Box

  •  Oral History Interviews*
    • Broschat, Myron
    • McLaughlin, James
    • Snustad, Nels


    * Cassette tapes located in tan cabinet and transcripts located in grey file drawers