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Heavily Annotated Blue Print Copy of One of the Earliest Large Scale Hydro-Electric Power Companies in Idaho

Wall map of a portion of the Northwestern United States, centered on Twin Falls and Shoshone Falls, illustrating the area proposed to be serviced by the Great Shoshone and Twin Falls Water Power Company.

The Great Shoshone and Twin Falls Water Power Company was one of the earliest power companies proposing to generate and distribute hydro-electric power in the region.   

At the bottom left, the Reference Key notes:

  • Irrigated Lines
  • Transmission Lines
  • Proposed Transmission Lines

 The annotations appear in orange, yellow, blue, green and brown, illustrating the various projects including:

  • Primary grid lines of the Great Shoshone & Twin Falls Water and Power Company
  • Idaho Consolidated Power Co (1500 kw installed, 3750 kw being installed)
  • Bear River Power Co. Birch Creek (150 kw)
  • Proposed 110,000 volt line between American Falls and Ogden Utah.
  • High Creek Electric Light & Power Co. Cub Creek 2 units (1350 kw and 1200 kw)
  • Bear Lake Power Co (385 kw).
  • Idaho Power Transportation (1500 kw)

While not identified, these lines may show the areas covered by competing companies or the expansion plans of the Great Shoshone and Twin Falls Water Power Company.

Great Shoshone and Twin Falls Water Power Company

The first commercial installation of an alternating current hydroelectric power plant was the Redlands California Power Plant in 1893, which launched an industry which would sweep through the west.

The Great Shoshone was formed by Ira Burton Perrine.  Perrine had previously formed the Twin Falls Land and Water Company in 1900, in order to create at damn at Twin Falls, which was first created in March 1905, followed by the Shoshone Falls Power Plant in 1907.   The combined capacity would be consolidated into the Great Shoshone.  The company would operate until 1915, when it was acquired by The Idaho Power Company.

Idaho Power was an amalgamation of the smaller local utilities that served Idaho's residential, industrial, and business customers. At one point there were 50 of these small predecessor power companies in Idaho, the oldest of which dated back to 1887. Shortly before the formation of Idaho Power these 50 were combined into five companies. On May 6, 1915, Idaho Power was incorporated and assumed ownership of the electric systems of Idaho-Oregon Light & Power Company, Idaho Railway, Light & Power Company, Idaho Power & Light Company, Southern Idaho Water Power Company, and Great Shoshone & Twin Falls Water Power Company.