THE PETROLEUM INDUSTRY

(From the Manuscript and Photograph Collections of the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library)


MANUSCRIPT COLLECTIONS

Oil Operators And Drillers

Adobe Oil and Gas Corporation (Midland, Texas)
Records, 1968-1984
620 leaves

The collection bulks with company annual reports (1968-1983) and Securities and Exchange Commission Reports (1975-1983). The collection also includes a clipping file (photocopied) from 1968 to 1984 on company events, activities, and milestones.
The Adobe Oil and Gas Corporation is an oil exploration, development, and production company operating from Midland, Texas. Formed in 1960, B. J. Pevehouse hoped to create an oil management company which could handle all phases of oil field development from exploratory drilling to production for both clients and the company. Chiefly active in the central Plains states, by the 1970s Adobe had operations across the country and had substantial investments in Canada, Ecuador, East Africa, and the North Sea. By the 1980s, Adobe had emerged as a diverse company active not only in oil, gas and mineral exploration, and development and production, but also as the owner of natural gas processing plants and an oil refinery, coal producer, processor, and marketer, uranium prospector, and operator of intrastate gas pipelines. The 1980s saw the company successfully weather the oil industry downturn, but B. J. Pevehouse stepped down as president. In the late 1980s, the company changed its name to Adobe Resources.

 

Anna Zip Oil Association (Brownwood, Texas)
Records, 1917-1920
168 leaves

Contains correspondence and financial and legal documents pertaining to the formation, business activities, and liquidation of the Anna Zip Oil Association.
This was an unincorporated joint stock association formed on July 12, 1918, for the purpose of drilling oil wells near Brownwood, Texas, and selling crude oil to refineries. The association was liquidated in 1920.

 

Bassett, Julian Markus
Papers, 1857-1982
22,001 leaves

Includes correspondence, legal material, financial material, biographical material, charts, photographs, reminiscences, and scrapbook material. Bulks (1917-1947) with land descriptions and appraisals, as well as geological reports and drilling logs of oil and gas wells located primarily in Terrell, Val Verde, and Pecos counties, Texas.
A rancher, land speculator, and oilman, Bassett was born in 1874 [H.A.] in New York. He moved to West Texas in 1882 where his father, Roger M. Bassett, had joined the BS Ranch outside Colorado City, Texas, with Harry Smith. In 1908, Bassett formed the C. B. Livestock Company with the Coonley brothers of Chicago, Illinois, and soon thereafter bought the Two-Buckle Ranch. It was through the course of the development of these ranch lands that Crosbyton, Texas, came about. In 1910, Bassett built a 39 mile rail line that connected Crosbyton to Lubbock, Texas. He married the former Cora Drake in 1915; the marriage produced four children. Bassett also developed 374 sections of rangeland in Terrell County, Texas. The land, bought from Sydney Webb, included the townsite of Dryden and, in 1930, Bassett moved his family there after suffering heavy losses in Gila, New Mexico, as a result of the depression. Later, he moved to San Antonio, Texas, where Bassett devoted his time to developing oil and mineral properties until his death in 1947.

 

Dearing, Curtis L.
Papers, 1925-1929

Includes correspondence containing a week by week description of the beginnings of oil drilling in West Texas and the inception of governmental drilling regulations.
Dearing was an oil driller for Westbrook and Company.

 

Double Five Oil Company (Amarillo, Texas)
Records, 1926-1929
312 leaves

The collection consists of a stock book (1926) listing stock dispersal, stockholders, transactions, and a corporation record (1926-1929), containing the stock subscription, company organization, secretary's minutes, and a stock register.
The Double Five Oil Company was incorporated on April 19, 1926, in Amarillo, Texas. G. C. Odom, Allan Early, H. E. Knapp, and Lum Humphreys served as president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer, respectively. Odom, Knapp, and a group of others were directors or firm members of Odom, Cotten, Turnley and Company, an incorporated real estate and investment business in Amarillo, Texas. The oil company emerged as an additional venture and ceased operations in the fall of 1929.

 

Five Star Oil Report
Collection, 1950-1956
96,326 leaves

The collection bulks with the newsletters "West Texas Daily (1/1950-11/1956), "Midland Daily" (5/1950-12/1956), "West Texas-New Mexico Semi-Weekly (1/1952-12/1956), "Dallas-Fort Worth Daily" (5/1952-9/1953), and "New Mexico Weekly" (2/1953-11/1956). Each issue highlights technical information on field exploration and developments, well completions, new fields, and drilling progress. These reports provide a convenient listing of active companies, and the news pages provide an informative clipped notice of field developments.
Published by the Petroleum News Corporation, the "Five Star Oil Report" focused on the exploration and production of petroleum in Texas, New Mexico, and southern Louisiana. Reports were issued yearly, semi-weekly, weekly, and daily.

 

Fuqua, H. B
Papers, 1963-1965
1 microfilm reel (20 ft.) : negative

Consists of Fuqua's personal files, including correspondence, financial material, memos of meetings, and printed and miscellaneous items relating to the dissolution of the Texas and Pacific Coal and Oil Company.
A geologist and banker, Fuqua began working for Gulf Oil Company in 1922 and later headed its southwestern operations. In 1949, he became head of the Texas and Pacific Coal and Oil Company. Later, he became the director of Fort Worth National Bank and was active in Fort Worth's community life. Fuqua promoted oil and gas conservation and protection of fresh water supplies from salt water incursion. He was inducted into the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum in 1973.

 

Gordon, William Knox
Papers, 1881-1979
2 microfilm reels : negative

Includes biographical material, correspondence, printed materials and company papers concerning coal and oil production. Bulks with materials relating to Gordon's role as Vice-president and general manager of the Texas and Pacific Coal and Oil Company at Thurber, Texas.
Born in Virginia in 1862, Gordon became a railroad surveyor and civil engineer. He came to Texas in 1889 and worked for Texas and Pacific Coal Company and discovered the Ranger Oil Field. He died in Fort Worth in March 1949.[H.A.]

 

Isett, Frank E.
Papers, 1838-1969
7,691 leaves

Includes correspondence, financial and legal material, and office files pertaining to Isett's business activities in the oil and gas industry. The collection bulks with financial documents, including oil and gas well receipts and business files, including abstracts of title for Eastland County, Texas (1838-1958); reports and drilling logs (1920-1966); plats, maps, and tables (undated); and Texas Railroad Commission rulings and reports (1948-1969). Also included are personal files and correspondence concerning family matters.
A resident of Brownwood, Texas, Isett served as an oil scout for the Gulf Oil Company (1917-1918), as superintendent for Schermerhorn Company of Arizona, and owned independent oil and gas wells in Eastland and Brown counties of Texas (1950-1969).

 

Livermore Drilling Company (Texas)
Records, 1936-1964
1,316 leaves

Contains correspondence, financial, legal, and printed material, and literary productions pertaining to the business activities of Mr. Livermore. The collection bulks (1948-1961) with business correspondence pertaining to South American oil development, Livermore's involvement with various oil-related associations, and financial and legal documents (1950-1955) related to drilling operations. One of the financial files pertains to the Lubbock Baseball Club, Inc.(1955-1956).
The Livermore Drilling Company was founded in 1951 by George Pogue Livermore upon his retirement from George P. Livermore, Inc., which Livermore founded in 1936. Based in Kermit, Texas, George P. Livermore, Inc. handled contract drilling for major oil companies and for Livermore's own interests in the Permian Basin of West Texas and Eastern New Mexico. George P. Livermore, Inc. also pursued drilling operations in Oklahoma, Colorado, and Utah. The offices were moved to Lubbock, Texas, in 1941. In the post-World War II era, the company expanded drilling operations to South America and drilled the first producing oil well in Chile in 1945. Upon Livermore's retirement, George P. Livermore, Inc. became the Great Western Drilling Company. George P. Livermore was born in 1903 in Plattsville, Illinois, and obtained his petroleum engineering degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1931. Livermore was employed by the Texas Company (1931-1935) and Mandeville & Thompson (1935-1936) before founding his own company in 1936. He was a founding member, and National Vice-President (1959), of the American Association of Oil Well Drilling Contractors. Livermore served as director of the Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association and the Independent Petroleum Association of America. He was also a member of the American Petroleum Institute, the Industrial Councilor for the University of Oklahoma Research Institute, and chairman of the board of the Texas Technological College Foundation (1957). He organized the Texas Tech Petroleum Advisory Committee in 1946, which worked with Texas Technological College in establishing the Department of Petroleum Engineering in 1948. Livermore married Mary Louise Luccock in 1930. He died in 1961.

 

Livingston Oil Company (Oklahoma)
Records, 1956-1968
252 leaves

The collection consists of legal materials (1956-1968) which include stockholders' reports, a stock prospectus, an application for listing on the New York Stock Exchange, and the Livingston Oil Company Annual Reports.
On May 16, 1955, the Oklahoma-based Livingston Oil Company incorporated and began exploration drilling, development of oil and gas properties, and sale of crude oil and natural gas. The company also developed interests in community antenna television (CATV) and microwave relay systems.

 

Lubbock-Bridgeport Oil Development Company
Records, 1918-1922
2,702 leaves

The collection consists primarily of business correspondence (1919-1922) and financial documents (1919-1921) relating to the company's drilling activities. The Bridgeport, Texas-based Lubbock-Bridgeport Oil Development Company was formed as an unincorporated joint-stock association of Shallowater, Lubbock, Bridgeport, and Fort Worth, Texas, businessmen and investors to tap into the oil "boom" frenzy prevalent in North Central Texas. Tempted by the proximity of oil in nearby Petrolia, Texas, the company leased wildcat prospects in Wise County, Texas, beginning in February, 1918. Drilling began in May 1919 and, with varying success, continued through 1920 with an exploratory wildcat dipping into depths of 4,500 feet--one of the deepest wells drilled to that date. The company formally incorporated as the Lubbock Oil Corporation in January 1920, and, with additional financing, resumed drilling operations. The company completed a dry-hole on June 27, 1920, which financially ruined Lubbock Oil. The company sold off leases and other property to complete the well. In July 1921, the stockholders dissolved the corporation.

 

Tye, William Orby
Papers, 1939-1983
4,454 leaves

Includes financial material, logs, printed items, soil stratification records, and wage records pertaining to the Tye and Sons Drilling Company. Also included is a four-page 1950 diary of W. Orb Tye. These materials contain references to Bill Goldsmith, Frank G. Goldsmith and George Goldsmith, Jim Tye, and Keith Tye.
A West and North Central Texas well drilling contractor, Tye is the son of George Goldsmith Tye who, in 1907, moved his family from Rotan, Texas to San Jon, New Mexico, and started a well-drilling business. The family moved to Floydada in 1911, where Orb and Frank Tye formed a partnership during the oil boom years at Burkburnett and Borger, Texas. In the 1930s, they continued in irrigation well drilling, covering a three-state area. In 1940, W. O. and his son, Bill, built the first Tye rotary drilling rig in Wichita Falls. This led to the eventual formation of the Tye and Sons Drilling Company at Floydada, of which W. O. remained head until his retirement in 1960, when his son, Bill, became head of the business. Their company had the distributorship for Layne Pumps and Continental Engines.

 

Ungren, Einar Augustus
Papers, 1847-1932
1 microfilm reel (10 ft.) : negative

Contains papers concerning Einar A. Ungren and his daughter, Marcia Ungren Foster (1847-1932), and includes photographs, newspaper clippings, certificates, and invitations.
An early West Texas oilman, Ungren was born in 1887 in Wimmerly, Sweden. He emigrated to Texas in 1910 and, by 1917, was wildcatting for oil. He formed the Onyx Oil company and successfully developed oil wells near Sipe Springs, Putman, and Abilene, Texas. He was the director and organizer of the Abilene Petroleum Club and a member of the executive committee of the West-Central Texas Oil and Gas Association. Underwood was also a member of the Lions Club and American Legion and was a 32nd degree Mason. He died in 1951 in Abilene.

 

Geologists

Counselman, Frank
Papers

Petroleum geologist.

 

Kemp, Augusta Hasslock
Papers, 1853-1974
4,354 leaves

Includes correspondence, financial material, genealogical material, legal material, literary productions, photographs, printed material, and scrapbook material. Bulks (1902-1967) with the personal papers of Kemp.
A teacher, geologist, and writer, Kemp was born in 1882, in Nashville, Tennessee. She received her M.S. in Geology and taught high school in Tennessee, Arizona, and Texas. She wrote numerous scientific articles and discovered several fossils, which were named Kempar in her honor. Augusta Kemp died in 1963.

 

Murray, Grover E.
Papers, 1904-1982
397,500 leaves

Bulks (1944-1982) with personal and professional correspondence, news items, printed programs and bulletins, financial and legal material, awards and notices, and scrapbook material, all pertaining to the professional career of Grover Murray. Also includes photographs and slides and a collection of rare postcards collected by Murray's daughter.
Murray holds a Ph.D. in geology and was a geologist for Ashland Oil Co., and Vice-President of academic affairs at Louisiana State University before succeeding Dr. R. C. Goodwin as President of Texas Technological College in 1966. He continued in that role until his retirement in 1976, and now serves as consultant at Texas Tech University.

 

Patton, Joseph T.
Papers, 1927
52 leaves

Includes a scrapbook containing captioned photographs of the first geology field trip undertaken by Texas Technological College. There also exist related clippings and cards not listed on the inventory.
The first professor of Geology at Texas Technological College, Patton conducted a field trip to New Mexico from June 7 to July 14, 1927. Participating students included Henry Mobley, W. T. Reed, Percy Denton, John McElroy, Lloyd Preatt, J.T. Gist, Eldon Thorpe, and J.F. Clingingsmith.

 

Perini, Vincent Charles, Jr.
Papers, 1896-1979
73,236 leaves

Consists of Perini Mining Company records and general business correspondence. Bulks (1896-1966) with records relating to expired, plugged, and producing oil leases. Records are subdivided by county and the individual lease names. Also bulks with ledgers (1927-1962) pertaining to business finances, leases, payroll, company minutes, and oil runs. Also contains materials related to drilling activity (1925-1955). Subdivided by county, these include geologic reports, maps, and profit/loss statements. Other materials include incorporation records and minutes of the Oil States Exploration Company which operated from 1936 to 1940.
An Abilene, Texas, oil man, petroleum geologist, and oil company executive, Perini was born January 15, 1895 in Denver, Colorado. He received B.A. and M.S. degrees from the University of Colorado (1919, 1920). He worked in Colorado as geologist, and joined Marland Oil Company in 1920s. He formed the early West Central Texas surface geology company of Merry Brothers and Perini in 1924. From the mid-1940s to the 1960s, Perini worked independently as a geologist and oil producer, and became the West Central Texas "dean" of geologists. During the mid-1950s, the Perini Mining Company prospected for uranium, mercury, and iron in Texas and the West. Perini's professional activities include: founder and first president of the Abilene Geological Society, former first president of the West Central Texas Oil and Gas Association, former Vice-president of both the Independent Petroleum Association of America and the National Stripper Well Association, charter member of the American Institute of Professional Geologists, and a member of the Texas Academy of Science. Perini died in 1965.

 

Robinson, W. I.
Papers, 1915-1955
270 leaves

Includes a scrapbook consisting of one letter, postcards, and photographs of Robinson's home, Texas Technological College, Blanco Canyon, and various trips. The collection bulks with literary productions (1915-1923) and printed material (1936-1955). Also includes copies of geology and paleontology articles by Robinson and others.
A geology professor at Texas Technological College during the 1950s, Robinson was born in 1890. The author of scientific articles on paleontology, Robinson was one of three Texas Technological College professors to see the Lubbock Lights UFO on August 25, 1951. He died in 1977.

 

Sidwell, Raymond
Papers, 1943-1951
106 leaves

Includes printed materials including Sidwell's article reprints in Sedimentary Petrology and American Mineralogist journals.
Born in Nebo, Illinois, in 1892, Sidwell attended the University of Iowa, where he received his B.A. (1925), M.A. (1926) and Ph.D. (1928). At Texas Technological College he worked as an assistant professor (1928-1932), associate professor (1932-1944) and full professor of geology(1945-1958). He also served as head of the department. Sidwell specialized in studying the origins and alterations of sediments. He published numerous articles for scholarly publications focusing upon such topics and examined sedimentary alterations in the terrain of West Texas and eastern New Mexico. He is a member of the Society of Economic Paleontology and Mineral Sedimentation and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists. Sidwell served as a fighter pilot in the U.S. Army during World War I (1917-1918), and married in 1926. He returned to his farm in Illinois after retiring from Texas Tech.


PHOTOGRAPH COLLECTIONS

Alexander, John D.
Photograph collection, 1908-1978
43 copy prints

Consists of photographs of the Alexander family and their experiences in farming and in the oil industry (1908-1949; 1978).
John D. Alexander grew up on the Screw Bean Ranch near Orla, Texas. In 1918, he went to work in the oil fields following the oil boom as a pipeliner, roughneck and, finally, drilling superintendent. He retired to Carlsbad, New Mexico in 1961.

 

Breckenridge, Texas
Photograph collection, 1898-1925
119 copy prints, 127 copy negatives

Consists of photographs of Breckenridge, Texas (1898-1925), and includes photographs of oil derricks, a devastating petroleum fire (1920s), and a panoramic view of the town (1925).
Breckenridge, Texas, county seat of Stephens County, has a population of 7,000. Established in 1885, Breckenridge was the center for an oil boom from 1918 to 1921. Presently, its industry centers around machine shops and cotton gins.

 

Freeman, Bennett
Photograph collection, 1920
137 copy prints

Collection consists of agricultural, railroad, and oil industry photos of Breckenridge, Desdemona, Jakehamon and Ranger, Texas. (1920s).
Bennett Freeman served in the U. S. Navy during World War I. He also worked for surveying and drilling companies near Ranger, Texas during the oil boom of the 1920s.

 

Thompson, Maurice
Photograph collection, 1920
9 copy prints

Consists of family photos of the Thompson family and of the petroleum industry in Mitchell County, Texas (1920). The collection also contains photos of the Badgett #1 Oil Well, Mitchell County, Texas (1920).
Maurice Thompson moved to Colorado City, Texas, with his family in 1919. His father worked as a driller for the Texas and Pacific Coal and Oil Company.

 

     
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