History of Shentel: Connecting Communities Since 1902

From Farmers Mutual Telephone System to a Diversified Telecommunications Company


Shenandoah Telecommunications Company (Shentel) was founded in 1902, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Then called Farmers Mutual Telephone System, the goal was to bring telephone service found in towns to the countryside. This is still important to Shentel today even though those humble beginnings are far behind us.

Today, Shentel is a diversified telecommunications company providing internet and data services, local exchange telephone services, video, long distance services, and leased tower facilities through a growing family of brands.

Under the Glo Fiber brand, Shentel offers fiber optic broadband services to business and residential customers.

Under the legacy Shentel brand, Shentel offers video, data and regulated and unregulated voice services through the cable network, as well as DSL internet access in some areas.

Where once Shentel was only available to customers in Shenandoah County, the company offers varying telecom services in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Kentucky.


  • Glo Fiber launches fiber-to-the-home service in the cities of Roanoke, Salem and Lynchburg, VA.
  • Sells wireless business with approximately 1.1 million subscribers to T-Mobile for $1.95 billion.


  • Shentel launches first Fiber to the Home market under the Glo Fiber brand in Harrisonburg, Virginia, offering speeds up to 2 Gigs.
  • Shentel purchases cable operations and assets of Big Sandy Broadband, a cable TV, Internet and Phone provider in Eastern Kentucky.
  • 1 Gig PowerHouse Internet service available in Virginia cable markets after soft launch in fall of 2018.


  • Shentel purchases Colane Cable TV in southwestern West Virginia.
  • Completes acquisition of nTelos, becomes sixth largest public wireless company in the United States.


  • Purchases cable operations and systems of JetBroadband in southern Virginia and southern West Virginia.
  • Purchases two small cable systems from Suddenlink – one in Maryland and the other in West Virginia.


  • Purchases cable systems in VA and WV from Rapid Communications.


  • Shentel partners with Sprint and becomes the first Sprint PCS Affiliate.


  • Internet service is made available.


  • Shenandoah Cellular launched and became the first company in the state of Virginia to offer cellular service to a rural area.


  • Shenandoah Telephone Company and Shenandoah Cable Television Company become subsidiaries of new holding company - Shenandoah Telecommunications Company (Shentel).


  • Shenandoah Telephone Company introduces Cable TV service.


  • Name changes to Shenandoah Telephone Company.


  • Farmers Mutual Telephone System (FMTS) incorporated as mutual company to serve customers—all of whom owned stock in the business.
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