The American Indian Oil & Gas Company was incorporated by Wiley W. Lowrey, E. S. Hutton, and J. W. Bates on May 3, 1917.

The company formed in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, with capital of $300,000.

By 1918, American Indian was operating from 321 Dewey Avenue, Poteau, Oklahoma, with eight successful natural gas wells yielding 50 million cubic feet daily.

The Poteau-Gilmore natural gas field had been discovered in 1910 by the Le Flore County Gas & Electric Company’s Hill No. 1 wildcat well. Initial gas flow was 4.5 million cubic feet.

The main production came from the Hartshorne sandstone about 1,200 feet to 2,000 feet below the surface.

American Indian came to the natural gas field and began to undercut the LeFlore Company’s rates by 10 cents per thousand cubic feet. American Indian then sued its competitor, asserting that LeFlore’s pipeline from the field should have “common carrier” status.]

The unsuccessful suit nonetheless produced a significant Oklahoma Corporation Commission ruling (Order No. 1517 – Cause No. 3543) regarding use of pipelines.

The following year, American Indian, now capitalized at $1 million, purchased rival LeFlore Country Oil & Gas. The

Although the American Indian Oil & Gas Company appears briefly again in 1921 when J. W. Bates becomes general manager and Wiley W. Lowrey resigns, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports the company as “dissolved” and its agent as James F. Orr.

Little is known about the company after 1921. The Poteau-Gilmore gas field’s average daily production reached 3.4 million cubic feet of natural gas from 59 wells by June 1929.


The stories of exploration and production companies joining petroleum booms (and avoiding busts) can be found updated in Is my Old Oil Stock worth Anything? The American Oil & Gas Historical Society preserves U.S. petroleum history. Please support this AOGHS.ORG energy education website. For membership information, contact © 2018 Bruce A. Wells.

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