Federated Rural Electric, Jackson, recently presented a donation totaling $7,500 to both the Jackson County Historical Society and the Martin County Historical Society.

Federated took advantage of matching funds from two organizations to triple the impact. “Federated donated $2,500, then secured matching funds from the CoBank’s Sharing Success Program and Basin Electric Cooperative,” stated Federated’s General Manager Scott Reimer. “Cooperatives are concerned about their local communities; we saw this as a way to help each organization accomplish a major project and assist in preserving that local history.”CoBank is one entity that provides Federated long-term financing for line construction projects, while Basin Electric is one of Federated’s wholesale power providers.

The Jackson County Historical Society in Lakefield started a $300,000 building addition campaign this year to increase the size of their artifact storage with a 50×96-foot addition at their existing site. “We will preserve the front half of the old pole barn, gain additional storage and gain more room for additional displays,” said Mike Kirchmeier, Jackson County Historical Society’s executive director.

The Martin County Historical Society in Fairmont is in the process of renovating one of its rooms in the Pioneer Museum into an “Interactive Room.”  According to the Society’s Lenny Tvedten, who is the executive director, “Visitors to this room, both children and adults, will have the opportunity to have a ‘hands on’ experience with the many displays such as a rotary telephone, manual typewriters, a vegetable and fruit market storefront, and a 1980s era computer.  This donation will be used for a proposed video security system, at a cost of $8,135 plus wiring, that will monitor this room in addition to the adjacent hallway and entrance doors, ensuring the safety of our visitors and the preservation of our historic and irreplaceable collections