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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Graceville in Jackson County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

When The Lights Came On

 
 
When The Lights Came On Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 4, 2014
1. When The Lights Came On Marker
Inscription. This structure is a symbol of progress and a testament to those determined rural residents who, through electricity, helped bring this area into the 20th century. On May 30, 1936 President Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945) signed into law the Rural Electrification Act which, 19 months later, would allow for the formation of West Florida Electric Cooperative (WFEC) and supply electricity for several hundred rural Graceville area residents. This federal act created the Rural Electrification Administration (REA), a branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which provided low interest loans to rural groups desiring to form their own electric cooperatives. On December 10, 1937, over 700 rural residents around Graceville joined together and formed WFEC. They borrowed $194,000 from REA to finance construction of the initial lines, related equipment and office facility. The first office was located in Marianna in 1938. In 1939 the office was moved from Marianna to Graceville and electricity came to these rural residents during that year. WFEC purchased this property in 1946 where the building now stands. Construction began on the building in 1948, and WFEC opened for business here in 1949.
A Florida Heritage Site

 
Erected 2002 by the West Florida Electric Cooperative
When The Lights Came On Marker Area image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 4, 2014
2. When The Lights Came On Marker Area
and the Florida Department of State. (Marker Number F-484.)
 
Location. 30° 57.124′ N, 85° 30.765′ W. Marker is in Graceville, Florida, in Jackson County. Marker is at the intersection of Peanut Road (County Road 169) and 2nd Avenue, on the left when traveling south on Peanut Road. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5282 Peanut Road, Graceville FL 32440, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 6 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. First Baptist Church (approx. 7 miles away); Southern Boundary of the United States (approx. 7 miles away in Alabama); Big Creek United Methodist Church / Joseph Watford Revolutionary War Veteran (approx. 9.8 miles away in Alabama); Kudzu Developed Here (approx. 12.3 miles away); Earliest Church In Hartford (approx. 14.6 miles away in Alabama); Holmes County (approx. 14.8 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  WFEC History. (Submitted on June 4, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.)
 
Categories. Charity & Public WorkIndustry & Commerce
 
West Florida Electric Cooperative image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 4, 2014
3. West Florida Electric Cooperative
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 21, 2017. This page originally submitted on June 4, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 403 times since then and 72 times this year. Last updated on June 5, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on June 4, 2014, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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