WEC Public Service Building 1936


WEC Energy Group was formed in 2015 but has predecessor companies that carry over a century of history.


1896 Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Co. logo

The Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Co. forms to provide electric, steam and interurban rail service. Service area covers more than 12,000 square miles.

William Nelson Cromwell becomes the company's first president.


John I. Beggs becomes president.


1906 Public Service Building

Company opens new headquarters — the Public Service Building at 231 W. Michigan St. in Milwaukee.


James Campbell becomes president.


James D. Mortimer becomes president.


1919 East Wells Power Plant

Early experiments at the East Wells Power Plant (then called the Oneida Street Plant) in downtown Milwaukee prove that the use of pulverized coal reduces the cost of producing electric power and conserves fuel.


John I. Beggs assumes second term as president.


1921 Lakeside Power Plant

Lakeside Power Plant, with an operating capacity of 40 megawatts, becomes the world's first plant to burn pulverized coal exclusively.


Sylvester B. Way becomes president.


First cookie book published.


1935 Port Washington Power Plant

Port Washington Power Plant goes into service with the first of five 80-megawatt units and achieves world record steam plant economy.


Company changes name to Wisconsin Electric Power Co.


Wisconsin Electric purchases the common stocks of Wisconsin Gas & Electric and of Wisconsin Michigan Power Co. from the North American Co.; war prompts the company to participate in government programs to conserve fuel, manpower and materials. Customers are asked to conserve energy.


Gould W. Van Derzee becomes president.


1953 Oak Creek Power Plant

Wisconsin Electric places first 120-megawatt generating unit in service at Oak Creek Power Plant. Seven more units were completed through 1968.


Lawrence F. Seybold becomes president.


Alfred Gruhl becomes president.


Wisconsin Electric joins other utilities to form the Mid-America Interpool Network, the largest power pooling network in the United States.


John G. Quale becomes president.


WE logo

Wisconsin Electric's 908-megawatt Point Beach Nuclear Plant begins operation and establishes a world-wide reputation for efficiency.


Charles S. McNeer becomes president of Wisconsin Electric.


Wisconsin Natural Gas Co., a Racine-based subsidiary of Wisconsin Electric, takes over Wisconsin Michigan gas operations.


1980 Pleasant Prairie Power Plant

Wisconsin Electric places first 580-megawatt unit at Pleasant Prairie Power Plant into service. A second 580-megawatt unit is put in service in 1985.


Wisconsin Electric restructures, establishing Wisconsin Energy Corp., and several new subsidiaries including Wispark, Wisvest and Witech.

Charles S. McNeer becomes president, chairman and chief executive officer of Wisconsin Energy.


Richard A. Abdoo becomes chairman, president and chief executive officer of Wisconsin Energy.


Wisconsin Energy buys Lake Geneva-based Wisconsin Southern Gas Co. and merges it into Wisconsin Natural.


Wisconsin Natural merges with Wisconsin Electric.


1998 ESELCO hydro plant

Wisconsin Energy buys ESELCO, parent company of Edison Sault Electric, based in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.


Wisconsin Electric adds its one-millionth electric customer.


WICOR logo

WICOR, a Milwaukee-based holding company of Wisconsin Gas, becomes part of Wisconsin Energy, creating the largest electric and natural gas provider in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Energy announces its 10-year growth strategy investing $3 billion to build at least five new power plants with a total capacity of 2,800 megawatts; investing $1.3 billion to upgrade existing power plants; and investing $2.7 billion in the distribution system.


We Energies logo

Wisconsin Electric-Wisconsin Gas changes its name to We Energies. The new name brings together the best attributes of two strong organizations, Wisconsin Electric and Wisconsin Gas and represents a single, forward-thinking organization with a re-energized focus on customer service.


Wisconsin Energy receives approval from the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin to begin construction on two natural-gas-fueled and two coal-fueled generating plants as part of the company's Power the Future plan.


Wisconsin Energy announces the sale of WICOR Industries, a manufacturer of water systems, filtration and pool equipment for $850 million, continuing the company's strategy to divest noncore businesses.

Gale E. Klappa becomes chairman and chief executive officer of Wisconsin Energy. He had been named president in December 2003.


Port Washington Generating Station

The first of two 545-megawatt natural gas-fueled units begins commercial operation at the Port Washington Generating Station.


We Energies sets an all-time demand record for electricity — 6,505 megawatts on July 31.

Unit 1 at the company's Pleasant Prairie Power Plant sets a new site record with 517 days of continuous operation.


Wisconsin Energy completes the sale of Point Beach Nuclear Plant to FPL Energy, for approximately $924 million.


Blue Sky Green Field Wind Energy Center

The Blue Sky Green Field Wind Energy Center begins commercial operation. The 10,600-acre site has 88 turbines and a generating capacity of 145 megawatts.

The second 545-megawatt natural gas-fueled unit begins commercial operation at the Port Washington Generating Station. The $669 million project is finished on time and on budget.


We Energies announces plans to construct a 50-megawatt biomass-fueled power plant at a paper mill site owned and operated by Domtar Corp. in northern Wisconsin.


The first of two 615-megawatt coal-fueled units at the Oak Creek expansion site attains commercial operation.

Wisconsin Energy completes the sale of Edison Sault Electric Co. to Cloverland Electric Cooperative of Dafter, Michigan, for $61.5 million.


Oak Creek Power Plant

The second of two 615-megawatt coal-fueled units at the company's Oak Creek expansion site attains commercial operation on Jan. 12.

Glacier Hills Wind Park begins operating 90 turbines in the towns of Randolph and Scott in Wisconsin.


J.D. Power and Associates ranked We Energies the number one large electric utility in the Midwest for satisfaction among business customers.

We Energies started a new construction project at its Twin Falls hydroelectric plant on the Menominee River near Iron Mountain, Michigan, at an estimated cost near $65 million.


Rothschild Biomass Cogeneration Plant begins commercial operation, adding 50 megawatts of renewable energy to We Energies’ generation portfolio.


WEC Energy Group logo

Wisconsin Energy acquires Integrys Energy Group, forming WEC Energy Group.


WEC Energy Group sells Trillium CNG, a compressed natural gas fueling service business acquired with Integrys Energy Group, to Love’s Travel Stops.


Acquired Bluewater Gas Storage in Michigan to provide about one-third of storage needs for WEC Energy Group’s natural gas distribution companies in Wisconsin.