Between 1935 and 1945, rural electricity access shot up from roughly 10% to 90%. During this time, the Rural Electrification Administration funded an Electric Farm Equipment (EFE) Roadshow as part of its mission to expand electricity access and demand. Digitizing massive amounts of archival data, our team has sought to quantify the effect of the EFE Roadshow on the larger trend of growing residential electricity consumption in rural U.S. towns from 1938 to 1945. We hope that understanding this crucial chapter in our own history will help inform present-day electrification efforts in the developing world.
Watch the team’s final presentation (on Zoom) here: