Rural Missouri - June 2020 - 32

LOUISE GETS LIGHTS
Asked what she liked the most about electricity, Louise
Eickhoff was quick to reply: "Lights. All it takes is a click
and you have light. I even have a light in the basement
and it's really handy," she told the Rural Electric Missourian. For 75 years Louise lived without the benefits of electricity. That ended in 1970 when she finally had a power
line run to her home. She moved to the house in 1915
and lived there her entire life, save for a short time during
World War II. The first thing she bought after getting electricity was an electric hotplate, which partially replaced
the wood cookstove she had been using. "I won't be using
the wood stove much anymore. There will be times when I
cook a lot that I will have to use it but no more than I have
to. I still do a lot of canning but that will change too when
I get my refrigerator. That's the next thing I want. I still
use the cellar. But most of the canning will stop when I get
the refrigerator." At the time just 2% of the U.S. population
lived without electricity.

WHEN HOLLYWOOD CALLED
Fans turned out by the thousands when Lassie visited
Meramec Caverns to film an episode of the popular TV
series in 1966, much to the delight of cave owner Lester
Dill, who wrote the book on roadside attraction marketing.
This Lassie, a male collie who was the third dog to play the
celebrated canine, traveled in style. His entourage included
two stand-ins for dangerous or stressful work, a chef and
three trainers. In this episode Lassie rescued two boys lost
in the cave. Crawford Electric helped make the show possible by installing a temporary 7,200-volt line and a transformer to power the cameras and lights. Lester, one of the
early directors of Crawford Electric, earned a walk-on role
in the movie. He was joined by twins Monte and Tommy
Perkins of St. Clair, who filled in for the human stars when
crews adjusted lighting. Cave employees reported the crew
was the nicest bunch of people to visit the cave, with no
drinking, cussing or unreasonable demands. A Tom Sawyer movie also was filmed at Meramec Caverns.

32

RURAL MISSOURI | JUNE 2020



Rural Missouri - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - June 2020

Contents
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - Cover1
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - Cover2
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - Contents
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - 4
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - 5
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - 6
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Rural Missouri - June 2020 - Cover3
Rural Missouri - June 2020 - Cover4
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