A Chronology of U.S. Oil & Gas

This Week in Petroleum History

This Week in Petroleum History, May 25- 31

May 26, 1891 - Patent will lead to Crayola Crayons - Today's Crayola crayons began when Edwin Binney and C. Harold Smith received a patent for their “Apparatus for the Manufacture of Carbon Black.” The refining process used petroleum to produce a fine, intensely black...

This Week in Petroleum History, May 18 – 24

The “Great Oil Boom” of northwestern Ohio began in May 1885 when Benjamin Faurot – drilling for natural gas – found oil instead in the Trenton Limestone formation. “The oil find has caused much excitement and those who are working at the well have been compelled to build a high fence around it to keep curiosity seekers from bothering them.”

This Week in Petroleum History, May 11 – 17

Originally the Caddo-Pine Island Oil and Historical Museum, Louisiana’s first publicly funded museum dedicated to the petroleum industry opened on May 14, 2004, at Oil City, north of Shreveport. On May 15, 1911, the U.S. Supreme Court mandated dissolution of the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey…

This Week in Petroleum History, May 4 – May 10

On May 4, 1869, the first U.S. patent for an offshore oil drilling rig was issued to Thomas Rowland, owner of Continental Iron Works of Greenpoint, New York, for his “submarine drilling apparatus.” Many experts believe this…

This Week in Petroleum History, April 27 – May 3

After receiving a degree in mechanical engineering in 1954, former eighth-grade teacher Jim Buchwald in 1966 founded Ariel Corporation in Mount Vernon, Ohio. Buchwald bought a lathe, a small hand-cranked rotary table and a vertical drill for manufacturing valves…

This Week in Petroleum History, April 20 – 26

The Los Angeles oilfield was discovered in 1892 when struggling prospector Edward Doheny drilled into tar seeps between Beverly Boulevard and Colton Avenue (near present-day Dodger Stadium). His well produced about 45 barrels of oil a day. By 1925, California would supply half of the world’s oil…

This Week in Petroleum History, April 13 – 19

April 13, 1974 - Oklahoma Well sets World Depth Record After 504 days and about $7 million, the Bertha Rogers No. 1 well reached a total depth of 31,441 feet before being stopped by liquid sulfur. Drilled in the heart of Oklahoma's Anadarko Basin, it was the deepest...

This Week in Petroleum History, April 6 to April 12

April 7, 1966 – Cold War Accident boosts Offshore Technology. A robotic technology soon adopted by the offshore petroleum industry was first used to retrieve an atomic bomb. America’s first cable-controlled underwater research vehicle (CURV) attached cables to recover the weapon lost in the Mediterranean Sea.

This Week in Petroleum History, March 30 to April 5

March 30, 1980 - Deadly North Sea Gale Massive waves during a North Sea gale capsized a floating apartment for Phillips Petroleum oil workers, killing 123 people. The Alexander Kielland platform, 235 miles east of Dundee, Scotland, housed 208 men who worked on a...

This Week in Petroleum History, March 23 to March 29

March 23, 1858 - Rock Oil Company reorganizes as Seneca Oil Investors from New Haven, Connecticut, organized the Seneca Oil Company with $300,000 in capital and former railroad conductor Edwin Drake a shareholder. The investors had purchased the leases of the...

History of oil and Gas

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