Preserving America’s exploration and production history is important for modern energy education.


The American Oil & Gas Historical Society is in the business of preserving U.S. petroleum history, which provides a context for understanding the modern energy industry. Bruce A. Wells founded AOGHS in 2003. He is a former energy reporter and editor who lives in Washington, D.C. The historical society today is an unincorporated sole proprietorship business. AOGHS and its website depend on financial contibutions.

The AOGHS.ORG website provides frequently updated research and energy education-related resources to students, teachers, researchers, journalists, authors, and others interested in petroleum history. Bruce Wells is assisted by his brother Col. (retired, USAF) Kristin L. Wells, volunteer contributing editor and researcher. “We strongly believe the industry’s often neglected history of social, economic, and technological advances since 1859 provides an important context for teaching the modern energy business, especially to young people. There are many individuals, including volunteers at community museums, historical societies, and professionals from the industry who not only help preserve a remarkable history, but also serve as ambassadors to the public.”

Executive Director Wells has spoken at many professional association meetings and expos; he has organized energy education conferences that have included field trips to oil museums in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. 

energy education

Bruce Wells speaks at industry conferences.

Bruce Wells History Awards 

Bruce Wells received the “Keeper of the Flame Award” from the Petroleum History Institute, Titusville, Pennsylvania, in August 2009. He was co-chairman of the Oil 150 Committee for the Sesquicentennial of America’s First Oil Discovery, Oil City, Pennsylvania, 2008-2009, and in the Titusville Oil Sesquicentennial Parade as a Drake Well Museum “Drake Day” VIP in 2009. Wells also was an honorary co-chairman of the 75th Anniversary of East Texas Oil Field Discovery Committee, Kilgore, Texas, in 2005, and an honored guest, at the 35th Annual Sistersville Oil and Gas Festival in West Virginia in 2003.

Explore these popular articles of AOGHS.ORG:

John Wilkes Booth and Dr. Seuss were once in the oil business; Maybelline cosmetics, Hula-Hoops, nylons, and Wax Lips were all petroleum product offspring; Harry Houdini patented a deep sea diving suit adopted by offshore drillers; “fracking” was the profitable brainstorm of a cashiered Union veteran; Florida’s first oil well was drilled after the state offered a reward; and countless thousands of obsolete stock certificates fascinate collectors – each has a tale of its own. Read More about AOGHS.



The American Oil & Gas Historical Society preserves U.S. petroleum history. Support this energy education website with a contribution today. For membership information, contact © 2019 Bruce A. Wells.