Minnesota Power honors Little Falls as home of hydro plant

MN-Power-Medallion-to-CityMinnesota Power honored the city of Little Falls with a medallion during its “Year of the Hometown Hydros.” Minnesota Power has been traveling the state honoring the cities where a hydroelectric generation station (hydro plant) is located. Little Falls is one of 11 cities that is home to a hydro plant, with origins dating back to 1849, when the Little Falls Mill and Land Co. was formed to build a dam and a sawmill. The original dam was destroyed by flood in 1860, and the new Little Falls Water Power Co. built a new dam in 1888, and was acquired by Minnesota Power and Light in 1923. The original electric generators were installed in 1906 on the units in Little Falls that continue to generate power. It is the oldest hydro plant in the state. The Little Falls plant is part of the western division hydro which also includes Blanchard, Pillager and Sylvan. The presentation of the medallion was made during the festival that celebrates the dam, the Dam Festival, June 21. Pictured are (from left): Minnesota Power hydro plant manager, Bonny Carlson; Minnesota Power COO Brad Oathes; Little Falls Mayor Cathy VanRisseghem and Little Falls Public Works Director Greg Kimman. The hydro plant uses the Mississippi at the dam to generate electricity for its customers.