Mystery History Answers (Jan. 2017)

(1917)* - Opening of the San Francisquito Power Plant No. 1 on March 18, 1917. Construction of the plant began six years earlier in 1911.  


On March 18, 1917 (100 years ago) the San Francisquito Power Plant No. 1, Unit 1 was placed in service and energy was delivered to Los Angeles over a newly constructed 115 kV transmission line. The 200 kilowatts generated by Unit 1 were the first commercial kilowatts generated by the Los Angeles Bureau of Power and Light. Subsequently, on April 16 and April 28, 1917, Units 2 and 3 respectively were placed in operation. This was the Los Angeles Bureau of Power and Light's first step in becoming an independent electricity provider. 

San Francisquito Power Plant No. 1 is still in service today.


Historical Background

In 1909 the Bureau of Los Angeles Aqueduct Power was created to build hydroelectric power plants along the Los Angeles Aqueduct. When Los Angeles acquired water rights in the Owens Valley section of Inyo County to construct the LA Aqueduct, it also obtained water-power sites along the way.

Ezra F. Scattergood was selected as the Bureau’s first chief electrical engineer. Scattergood led the way in the development of hydroelectric power along the route of the aqueduct and became William Mulholland’s counterpart for the Power System.

Click HERE to see more in Electricity on the Aqueduct.


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References and Credits

* DWP - LA Public Library Image Archive



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