The history of Duke Energy in Florida started with the Catawba Power Company of the first decade of the 20th Century and focused originally on providing power to North and South Carolina. That company, founded by Dr. W. Gill Wylie, James Buchanan Duke and William States Lee, opened its first power plant in 1904, the Catawba Hydro Station in South Carolina. In 2012, the company expanded into Florida, creating Duke Energy Florida.
Known as Duke Power at the time, the company created its first nuclear power plant in 1972 as the culmination of the Keowee-Toxaway Project that begin in 1965. The project won the company an Edison Award, its first of three, and was a response to the massive need for electricity following World War II.
Following the deregulation of gas in the 1990s, Duke Power merged with PanEnergy in 1997 and formed Duke Energy. This gave Duke Energy a foothold in the gas energy industry. In 2006, Duke Energy merged with Cinergy Corp, which gave Duke Energy customers in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. In 2012, Duke Energy's move into Florida came after a merger with Progress Energy. This merger created the largest electrical utility company in the United States, offering service to over 7 million households.