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Walter S. Wyman, Electrical Entrepreneur

This Exhibit Contains 4 Items
1
Walter S. Wyman, Augusta, ca. 1925

Walter S. Wyman, Augusta, ca. 1925

Item 74736 info
Maine Historical Society

Walter Scott Wyman (1874-1942), one of the two founders of Central Maine Power, is among many men and women who contributed to the electrification of Maine.

Wyman was born in Oakland (then West Waterville). He studied electrical engineering at Tufts University and in between terms worked as a telegraph operator. During the summers he managed the Western Union office in Bar Harbor.

Wyman left Tufts before his senior year, and soon became general manager of the Waterville and Fairfield Railway and Electric Company.

In 1899, Wyman left the Railway and Electric Company and, along with his friend Harvey Doane Eaton, formed his own business that eventually became Central Maine Power.


2
Messalonskee dam, Oakland, ca. 1900

Messalonskee dam, Oakland, ca. 1900

Item 74731 info
Maine Historical Society

Central Maine Power began on the Messalonskee stream in Oakland in 1899 when Wyman and partner Harvey Doane Eaton purchased the Oakland Electric Light Company and its small water-powered turbine and generator.

Wyman and Eaton replaced the old unit in 1901 when they created the Messalonskee Electric Company to power streetlights in nearby Waterville.


3
Fort Halifax dam and hydro station, Winslow, 1909

Fort Halifax dam and hydro station, Winslow, 1909

Item 74732 info
Maine Historical Society

In 1907 the Messalonskee Electric Company completed its first new hydropower investment, Fort Halifax Station on the Sebasticook River in Winslow.

In 1908 the station began providing power to several local interurban railways – major customers that provided almost half of the company’s revenues.

In 1910, Messalonskee Electric Company changed its name to Central Maine Power.


4
Map of power system, 1927

Map of power system, 1927

Item 74738 info
Maine Historical Society

By 1927, Central Maine Power had grown far beyond Oakland, through its own extensions as well as the purchase and integration of smaller companies.

With an eye to future expansion, the company had secured the rights to several potential dam sites, including Indian Pond on the upper Kennebec, which was not developed until the 1950s.


This Exhibit Contains 4 Items