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History

On May 14, 1938, wheels were set in motion which would bring electric power to rural Montana. Several ranchers were instrumental in getting the project rolling and they petitioned the Rural Electric Administration (REA), now called Rural Utilities Service (RUS), in Washington, D.C. to form a rural electric association to supply power and to allocate funds for the project.

From the small beginning of 176 miles of power lines in 1939, Fergus Electric Cooperative has grown to 4,030 miles of energized line covering 24,000 square miles in 12 counties. The member count has increased from 203 in 1939 to approximately 3,753 in 2012 .

In the 1930's, construction workers used hand tools to dig holes and erect poles. The "banjo" - a straight bladed narrow shovel and the "spoon" - a tool used to scoop out dirt were the principal tools available. In the 1940's a semi-mechanical digger, called a "budda" came into use. In the 1960's, Fergus Electric acquired single and double bucket trucks. And in the 1970's, the cooperative acquired a high ranger on a four wheel-drive truck. As needed, equipment is purchased and replaced.

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