Air Race: California to Hawaii

  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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Psychic Locates Oilfield

  August 7th, 1933 – Permian Basin Comic “Alley Oop” Hits the Presses Even though the cartoon “Alley Oop” appeared for the first time in August 1933, the story behind this comic actually dates back much earlier. It all started with a 1926 oil discovery in the Permian Basin. A small Texas oil town would later be named the inspiration for artist of the comic, Victor Hamlin. Iraan was first identified as a booming town in 1926 after the discovery of the productive Yates oilfield. The town’s name merged names of landowners Ira and Ann Yates. During the oil boom, in Permian Basin, Hamlin was as a cartographer for an oil company. He had a fascination with paleontology and geology which ultimately led to the development of his comic strip.     August 7th, 2004 –Well Control Expert, Paul “Red” Adair Passes Away On August 7th, 2004, Paul “Red” Adair, a famed firefighter and well control expert passed away at age 89 in Texas. Adair, born in 1915,. Served on the bomb disposal unit for the U.S. Army during World War II. After his service, he worked for Myron Kinley, a pioneer in oilfield firefighting from California. Adair established his own business, called the Red Adair Company in 1959. He created new technologies designed for “wild well” control. Over the years, his organization put out upwards of 2,000 well fires and blowouts all over the world. The oilfield firefighter’s expertise was documented in the 1968 John Wayne film Hellfighters. These skills were put to the test in 1991 when Adair and his organization put out 117 oil well fires in Kuwait that were started by Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi Army.     August 9th, 1921 – Reflection Seismography Discovered in Oklahoma Dr. J.C. Karcher, a physicist from Oklahoma, pioneered research that led to the first reflection seismograph in the world.  In 1921, this geologic section was measured close to Ardmore. According to the Oklahoma Historical Society, the state was the first location where this technique for oil exploration was used. The method records reflected seismic waves as they move through the earth, resulting in the location of productive oil formations. The Arbuckle Mountains were selected for a pilot survey on this technique due to the number of exposed formations in this area.     August 9th, 1922 – Psychic Helps Locate Oilfield in Texas The United North and South Oil Company had a breakthrough with the Rafael Rios No. 1 Well close to Luling, Texas, thanks to insight from an unexpected source; a psychic by the name of Edgar Cayce. This discovery came after they had just drilled six dry holes. In 1922, another oil field was uncovered. It was over 10 miles long and more than a mile wide. Two years later, the field had nearly 400 wells that produced oil, yielded more than 10 million barrels of oil. This company was the first tap oil production in the area, thanks to president President Edgar B. Davis who locals claim was the one to contact the psychic. Davis later sold his leases to the Magnolia Petroleum Company for more than $10 million. It was biggest oil deal in Texas to date. The psychic, Cayce, claimed that he had great success helping many wildcatters. However, he failed with his own oil company, only drilling dry holes. According to Reader’s Digest, Luling now has a yearly Roughneck BBQ and Chili Cook-Off to celebrate the discovery,  They are said to have the best ribs in the nation.     August 10th, 1909 – Dual-Cone Roller Bit Hits the Market Howard Hughes Sr. of Texas made “fishtail” drill bits obsolete with his invention of the dual-cone roller bit. This patented design was made of two turning cones that could pulverize hard rocks, leading to deeper and faster drilling. According to many historians, there were several people trying to improve drill bits at this time. Hughes and business partner Walter Sharp were the ones who found success. Months before receiving their patent in 1909, they founded the Sharp-Hughes Tool Company. They did this so that they could manufacture their bit. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers noted that rather than scraping at rock, like the fishtail bit does, the Hughes bit adopted a different approach that instead burrowed in to the rock. On August 10th, 2009, 100 years after the initial discovery, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers named the invention a historic mechanical engineering landmark. The ASME added that by chipping and powdering rock formations, the Hughes Two-Cone Drill Bit could reach a great depth and tap into reservoirs thousands of feet below surface level which would have a lasting impact on the oil industry.     August 12th, 1930 – Western Kentucky Oil Men’s Association Takes Shape Independent producers from Eastern Kentucky joined the Western Kentucky Oil Men’s Association in August of 1930. During the meeting, held in Frankfurt, articles of incorporation were revised that would go on to establish a statewide organization. This organization is now known as the Kentucky Oil and Gas Association. In 1919, oil was discovered close to Pellville in Hancock County, Kentucky. This started an oil boom in the area. Historians also claim this state was home to the first commercial oil well in America. Oil was initially found here in 1829 while boring for salt brine on a farm close to Burkesville.     August 13th, 1962 – Norman Rockwell Appears in Oil and Gas Journal The Oil and Gas Journal used a now infamous drawing from artist Norman Rockwell to promote their publication in 1962.  It was called “Where Oil Men Invest Their Important Reading Time.” Rockwell’s depictions of American became popular in many magazines including Leslie’s Illustrated Weekly,  Saturday Evening Post and more. Rockwell created artwork for the American Petroleum Institute in 1959. They sponsored a “first day of issue”  for the U.S. postal service celebrating the birth of the oil industry in the United States, which took place 100 years earlier. According to...

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