In the early 1950's Dunn County Electric Cooperative, Stout State College, and Herman C. Potthast partnered up to create one of the first electrical safety movies to be translated and distributed worldwide. Enjoy My Pop's a Lineman!
One of the very first electrical safety videos ever created and distributed worldwide was made right here in Dunn County in 1956. Dunn County Electric Cooperative employees took part in the making of the movie. We found the original reel-to-reel movie when searching through the archives for our 75-year anniversary.
According to the Dunn County REC 50th Anniversary booklet in 1985:
The story of making My Pop's a Lineman began with research and script writing in 1956. Filming began in the spring of 1957. Tony Brensdal, Manager of the Cooperative, and Wilbur Hake, Line Superintendent, took on new responsibilities as technical advisors for the film, as well as making their acting debuts.
The first showing of My Pop's a Lineman was at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Region 5 meeting in Springfield, Ill. By January of 1958 the film department at Stout was unable to keep up with order demands. Electrical Cooperative requests were joined by those of insurance companies, universities, power companies, school systems, fire marshalls, boards of health, farm bureaus, industrial commissions, the U.S. Army, and the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. In addition, a number of TV stations aired the film.
The film was sold in every state in the Union. It was shown in Canada, Holland, Australia, Puerto Rico, Thailand, Greece, Netherlands, Phillippines, Panama Canal Zone, and Israel. Records also indicate a copy was sent to South Africa in 1984.