This Week in Oil and Gas History: January 2 – January 8

January 2, 1866 – First ‘Modern’ Rotary Rig Patented Pictured here is a drawing of Peter Sweeney’s patent. In 1866, Peter Sweeney patented the first rotary drill, a design meant to be an improvement on an earlier creation from Britain’s Robert Beart. This device includes many basic aspects of modern drill rigs that are still […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: December 26 – January 1

December 26, 1905 – 55 Gallon Drum Design Patented Nellie Bly, owner of the Ironclad Manufacturing Company and holder of the 55 gallon drum patent, was a journalist before she was an industrialist. Here she is pictured preparing for her round-the-world trip, which she completed in 72 days. A man by the name of Henry […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: December 12 – December 18

December 13, 1905 — Birth of the Gas-Electric Hybrid The large wheel hubs contain motors that are powered by an electrical generator run by a gas engine. In 1902, as the petroleum exploration and drilling business was just getting started, there was still a lot of mystery surrounding just how much oil there would really […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: May 1 – May 7

May 1st, 1860 – West Virginia Shows Promise in Petroleum In May 1860, John Castelli Rathbone located oil at a stream named Burning Springs Run, in present-day West Virginia. This discovery is credited with beginning of the petroleum industry in the state. The well, named the Rathbone Well, had a depth of 300 feet and […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: April 27 – May 3

April 24th, 1911 – The Magnolia Petroleum Company Takes Shape In 1898, Corsicana, Texas was home to only one small refinery, however, it quickly lead to a boom that would bring countless other companies to the area.  In, 1911, these companies were consolidated into Magnolia Petroleum Company, an unincorporated joint-stock association. In 1925, a New […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: April 17 – April 23

April 17th, 1919 – The Start of Another Texas  Oil Boom In 1919, the Waggoner No. 1 Well produced 4,800 oil barrels every day starting another oil drilling boom in the Wichita County, Texas area. S.L. Fowler’s farm was the location of a well that brought in a large number of organizations along Red River […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: April 10 – April 16

April 10th, 1866 – The Densmores Usher in Change James and Amos Densmore, inventors from Meadville, Pennsylvania were approved for a patent on their petroleum transporting system that lead to the Pennsylvania oil boom a year earlier. The Densmore Brothers and America’s First Successful Railway Oil Tank Car, 1865 The cars shown in the patent […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: April 3 – April 9

April 4th, 1951 – Williston Basin Revealed In North Dakota, Amerada Petroleum struck oil and discovered the infamous Williston Basin when they dug down two miles below the Clarence Iverson farm. The company had struggled for several weeks, efforting to drill through major snowstorms, when they finally made their discovery in early April. This basin […]

This Week in Oil and Gas History: March 27 – April 2

March 27th, 1855 – Kerosene Trademarked by Canadian Chemist Abraham Gesner, a Canadian chemist and physician patented a now very widely used process that distills coal and turns it into a fluid called kerosene. Gesenser claimed to have discovered and subsequently invented a way to manufacture the new matter. Since the fluid was sourced from […]