Cleco's roots go back to the 1906 installation of a 25 kWh Corliss steam-driven generating plant in Bunkie, LA.


In 1914, Cleco added a 50 kWh diesel engine to the plant to produce ice and light; and in 1935, it became part of Louisiana Ice & Electric Company, which today is known as Cleco Corporation.


Because ice was necessary long before electricity, ice manufacturing fostered the early development of the South's electric industry. Small steam or internal combustion electric motors powered the machinery that ran ice plants. Ice companies used power to light the plants and distributed excess energy to nearby homes and businesses. As demand increased, more facilities were needed to supply electricity and, eventually; manufacturing and delivering electricity became more important than making ice.

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