On March 25, 1940, a group of farmers and merchants from Cherokee, Union and Spartanburg counties gathered at the Cherokee County Courthouse to hear from county agents and representatives from the Rural Electrification Administration about how they finally have access to electricity by forming a member-owned electric cooperative.
By June 10, 1940 Broad River Electric Cooperative was incorporated and by October of the next year new co-op lines were being energized by a substation on Pacolet Highway.
Glenn Inman, who came from Cherokee County's Sunnyside community and was the driving force in the local co-op's creation and the first manager. Those first board members who would direct the cooperative’s beginning included Inman, who was named the president, C. A. Granger of Jonesville as vice-president, J.C. Hammett of Cowpens as secretary and T.L. Neal of Holly Grove as treasurer. Other members of the board elected on that night were C.R. Lancaster of Pauline, M.C. Page of Jonesville, Henry Thomas of Cowpens, F.M. Pool of Cowpens, and J. Preston Cash of GaffneyOther leaders would follow in their footsteps. Carlisle Hart was elected Chair of the Board in 1951 and would remain in that position for 50 years. He and his boards brought in sharp, forward-thinking managers like Broadus Brown, Bob Carroll, Richard Baines and Doug Wilson.
Together, they have helped the cooperative become a utility respected across the region and a cooperative the members know they depend on.
All members are entitled to a copy of Power for Progress: A History of Broad River Electric Cooperative. A DVD of the video show here is also available upon request.