By Daniel E. Winkelman, Robert D. Livingston, and Rowena Wise Day
Sacramento Pioneers of Power and Light tells the story of how the Gold Rush led to the development of electrical power. The Folsom Power House was one of the earliest alternating current power plants in the United States. In 1895 it opened and operated as the longest transmission lines of any power plant in North America. It produced power and sent it 22 miles to Sacramento. That was the longest power transmission in the U.S. until that time. Experimental single-phase alternating current power stations were first built in the US in the mid 1880s. Ten years later the work of many engineers culminated into the work at the Folsom Power House, the facility was one of the first equipped with three phase 60 cycle power, the same type of power we use today.