August 15th, 1945 – Gas Rationing Comes to an End

The gas rationing that began during World War II ended in 1945. In 1942, when it started, the Office of Price Administration gave out coupon books and priority stickers in an attempt to conserve resources. Almost every civilian’s vehicle had an “A” sticker, which allowed them to have four gallons of gas per week.

A nation-wide speed limit of 35 miles per hour was put into place reduce gas consumption, but it wasn’t the only rationing effort that came as a result of the war. People also rationed food, tires, coffee and shoes.

August 16th, 1861 – McClintock Discovery Becomes Known as Oldest Producing Oil Well

A well completed close to Rouseville, Pennsylvania, the McClintock No. 1 Well became known as the oldest oil-producing well in America. The well reached just over 600 feet and produced 50 BOPD, located just 14 miles from Titusville where America’s first commercial well discovery took place.

The Oil Region Alliance for Business, Industry, and Tourism states that the McClintock is the oldest well that still produces oil at its initial depth. This organization promotes this well and other important historic landmarks in northern Pennsylvania.

In 1995, the well was donated by Quaker state. The Alliance claims that it still produces up to ten barrels of oil every month. While a marker is close to the site identifies the McClintock Well, many people pass the well every year and have no idea it’s there. In the Drake Well Museum, souvenir bottles of oil from this well are available.

August 16th, 1927 – Phillips Petroleum Fuels Air Race From California to Hawaii

The Phillips Petroleum Company developed high-octane fuel that allowed a monoplane to travel over the Pacific Ocean and that would eventually instigate the start of a deadly air race. August 16th, 1927, eight aircrafts took flight from Oakland, California in front of a crowd of more than 50,000 people watching this event.

The race started in California and was to end in Hawaii, where the Dole Pineapple Company offered up $25,000 prize for the person who took first place. This came just three months after Charles Lindbergh became the first person to make a solo flight across the Atlantic ocean.

Phillips Petroleum provided the fuel that powered the winning plane, as a special fuel was needed to make the 2,439-mile flight over the Pacific Ocean. The fuel, known as Nu-Aviation gasoline was the latest Phillips product and was developed to power a single-engine monoplane known as the Woolaroc.

Unfortunately, at the airport in Oakland, two fuel-heavy planes crashed during takeoff. After the crash, the remaining five planes flew out over the Pacific. Out of the five, only two were able to make it to Hawaii.

August 17th, 1785 – Oil Discovered Floating on Pennsylvania Creek

Just two years after the Revolutionary War ended, oil was found floating on a creek in Pennsylvania. U.S. Army General William Irvine revealed the area was labeled as Oil Creek because of the matter found floating at the surface.

According to General Irvine, the natives claimed this oil cured ailments including ulcers and rheumatic pains. According to the general, the creek emptied itself into the Allegheny River and the water flowed from a spring. The oil was on top of the water, much like Barbados tar and a single person alone could collect several gallons of the oil each day.

Oil Creek State Park used to be filled with barges and wooden derricks looking for more oil lurking beneath the surface. Now, it attracts many people with nearly 10,000 acres that are great for biking, backpacking and hiking.

August 18th, 2007 – Crater Exhibit Opens at Oklahoma Museum

The Astrobleme Museum opened in Ames, Oklahoma in 2007 and featured an exhibit shows the impact of a meteor and how it lead to a huge oil discovery in the area. The discovery was made by Harold Hamm almost 500 million after the meteor struck.

The location of the oil was about 20 miles from Enid and it was buried by almost 10,000 feet of sediment, making it virtually invisible. Impact craters were believed to be an unlikely place to find petroleum prior to this discovery.

Even though other wells were uncovered close by, no one had dug into the deep and hidden Ames crater of Major Country until 1991 when then Hamm’s Continental Resources drilled down to nearly 10,000 feet. This was unusual for the area, yet the drillers were able to locate oi and what would become one of the most prolific craters. It produced just over 17 million barrels of oil and close to 80 billion cubic feet of gas.

Independent producer Lew Ward of Ward Petroleum noted that the Ames Astrobleme was incredible discovery and one of the most observed geological features on the planet thanks to its massive impact on the economy.

Thanks to this discovery, oil companies across the globe began to see the potential of craters.

August 19th, 1957 – Oil Discovery in Washington

The Sunshine Mining Company drilled the first commercial oil well in Washington state in August of 1967. The well was called The Medina No 1 and produced just over 220 BOPD. The well was located in Grays Harbor County near Ocean City and had a depth of 4,135 feet.

Another well that was discovered 6 months before this produced more than 30 BOPD. However, it was labeled as non-commercial and later deserted. In contrast, the Medina produced almost 13,000 barrels until the well was capped in 1961.

According to a report in 2010, over 600 wells have been drilled in the state. Despite that, commercial production never occurred. In fact, no oil production has taken place in the state since 1962. However, some companies still continue to search for methane to this day.

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