In 1996, there was no Internet Service Provider (ISP) providing access
to the residents of our area. At that time, the Internet was
still in its infancy, and the market wasn't yet recognized.
Quite frankly, no one was interested in investing in a small rural
area such as ours.
A small group of interested residents met to discuss this problem.
Out of the series of meetings that followed grew the HERD Community
Network, Inc. HERD gets its name from the acronym formed by
the towns within its service area: Hermon, Edwards, Russell
In the beginning, we had two primary goals. The first was to
provide Internet access to the community, at a reasonable cost and
without a long distance telephone charge. The second was to give
the towns of our area a presence on the World Wide Web.
The ISPs who provided service to other parts of the north country
at that time didn't see the potential for our area. We did.
Even we didn't realize, however, how much was out there for us and for
the Internet in general. We first went on-line, both as an ISP
and as a web site on June 1, 1996. Originally, the organizers
had hoped to provide Internet access for 50 to 75 households. As
time went on, HERD grew. As we grew, problems developed.
Being a small, grass roots organization, our resources, both financial
and manpower, were limited. Over the next two years, our
membership swelled to over 225. Only a handful of volunteers
were involved and it became too much for them to handle.
The Board of Directors at that time started looking into options.
It was decided that it would be in the best interest of the community
to let a commercial ISP take over that aspect of HERD. On July
27, 1998, we entered into an agreement with TDSNET who now provides
Internet access locally to our service area. They also provided us with free hosting for the HERD
website for several years. In 2010, it was determined that there
would be several advantages to hosting our site on our own.
Today, HERD is a registered non-profit organization. Since
the beginning, we provided a website for the area. Now, our
primary function is to serve as an on-line promoter for our towns,
through our web site.