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ufacturers had before them the efforts of S. Kier and Nevin, McKeown & Co., of March, 1857; the latter company's well at Greensburg, Penn., in 18r>8; the offer of $1,000 for a lamp that would burn petroleum made by S. Kier in 1857, and also the shipments made to New York in November, 1857, by A. C. Ferris, and the introduction of a lamp in which the odorous oil would burn. Col. Drake's well soon shadowed the coal oil extract works out of existence, and nothing was heard throughout Pennsylvania but stories of wells and drills and oils.

In April, 1861, oil was found on the Beckwith farm, a mile west of Smethport; at Port Allegany the citizens drilled a well, while near McCoy's mill pond (in the vicinity of Smethport) oil was discovered, and down the Tuna exploration was carried on. About this time some irreverent drillers placed a sign on their new derrick, "Oil, Hell or China." Their resolution amounted

to little as they did not strike oil, or China. In 1862 the old Barnsdall

or Bradford well near west city line was drilled, a spring pole being part of the machinery used. With this rude driller and ruder ideas of the reservoir, it is no wonder that the tired and disappointed owners abandoned the work at a depth of 200 feet, or within 825 feet of the productive sand. In 1865-66, the citizens of the little village of Bradford* formed a bee to explore farther, and drilled to a depth of 875 feet, when they surrendered the works within 150 feet of the point where perseverance would bring victory. Basing their ideas on the Oil City fields, where the top of the productive third sand is 528 feet above ocean level, they, with little labor, essayed to elevate the level of the Bradford third sand which is 114 feet below that of Oil City, a physical impossibility indeed. In 1864-65 the Dean Brothers drilled 900 feet on the Shepherd farm, near Custer City. Here another disappointment waited on ignorance of geological structure, for while the old Bradford sand could be found 1,100 feet below the surface there, it was at least 200 feet deeper down on the Shepherd farm. Men were wild in those days. Impatience as well as ignorance of altitudes and structures ruined many individuals, whose ideas were otherwise practicable. The Dean Brothers did poorer work on the Clark farm (Tarport), where they halted within 400 feet of the top of the producing sand, after wasting time and labor on a 605-feet hole. Kinzua Village oil-field dates back to 1865, when the Kinzua Oil Company and the Kinzua Oil Association were organized, and six wells drilled to a depth of 600 feet, but oil answered the drill in only small quantities. In 1875 Hunter & Cummings drilled on the Cobbett farm without success, and in 1878 E. A. VanScoy & Co.'s venture on Wolf ran was equally unsuccessful, although residents and others were much enthused by the appearances and disappearances of oil. In the winter of 1884-85 James Parker & Co. drilled on the Fuller farm, and on March 27, 1885, the "Kinzua Gusher" was expected to drown out all other wells, but yielded only twenty five barrels. Later, however, staying wells were developed and worked successfully.

In 1868 the several oil enterprises of Job Moses, in the neighborhood of Limestone, gave an idea of what the true development of this region would yield. The Salem Oil Company's well was being drilled in August, 1871, on

*Old August 87, 1866, the Kingsbury well at Bradford was drilled by Mr. Walshe to a depth of 791 feet (eighty feet in oil bearing rock), when a vein of oil was struck. P. T. Kennedy states that the well of 1865-66, put down by the villagers, produced a tine quality of lubricating oil in small quantities. A man named Hale pumped from this well for a number of years. The Dean Brothers' well on Shepherd's run was drilled for a Middleiown (N. Y.) company.

fThe Salem Oil Company's well mentioned was never drilled in 1871, but in 1876 carried out their plans near where P. T. Kennedy drilled the second well in that neighborhood. The Taylor Company found some oil in the second sand, but in 1876 others drilled deeper and were successful. Job Moses drilleo across the line from 18G5to 1875, meeting with small success.

Shepherd's run, near DeGolier and the Elk Lick spring. The W. H. Taylor Oil Company organized in September, 1871, with J. K. Haffey, president; J. W. Hillon, vice-president; T. J. Campbell, treasurer, and T. J. Melvin, secretary, to drill wells on Kendall creek, on the Moore farm. Mark Hardie, of Mt. Alton, and others were members of this company. In August, 1871, a meeting held at the new Bradford House, at Bradford, to consider means to develop the oil field, organized the Barnsdall Oil Company, with J. W. Hilton, president; J. R. Pomeroy, vice-president; C. C. Melvin, treasurer; T. J. Melvin, secretary; James Broder and Enos Parsons, directors.

In 1871 old-time methods changed for the better. The Foster Oil Company was organized with C. H. Foster, Job Moses and James E. Butts, members. They drilled at a point two miles northeast of Bradford, and in November struck a ten-barrel-per-day sand 1,110 feet below the well's mouth. Even with this example of perseverance nothing more of importance was accomplished until December 6, 1874, when Butts & Foster opened Butts well No. 1 on the Buchanan farm, a half mile northeast of their first well, and struck a seventy-barrel-per-day stream. The product for the month was seventy-five barrels. Before April 1, 1880, there were 4,000 producing wells in the Bradford oil district, yielding 50,000 barrels daily. In March, 1874, the Emporium Press, referring to the Butts wells below Tarport, noticed the progress of development as follows: '' The oil fever is raging in our neighboring county. Two wells have been put down at Bradford, and both are yielding well. The oil is of better quality than that found in the oil regions, and many oil men are changing base, preparing to operate in this new oilderado. The oil is found at a depth of eleven hundred and fifty feet." In March, 1875, J. C. Jackson and A. B. Walker leased of P. T. Kennedy a farm one mile east of Bradford (now producing), and they completed their first well in July—the first ever drilled into the third Bradford sand—yielding about twenty-five barrels per day. This field J. C. Jackson, A. B. Walker, S. Solomon, Elias Eckhart formed a company to develop, putting down twenty paying wells in 1875-76. Meantime Mr. Kennedy had his royalties from this field, and shortly after the well proved a success he purchased Eckhart's interest. Olmsted, of Tidioute, finished his well into slush oil below the old Bennett farm, on the Crooks farm, one mile north of the well on the Kennedy farm, about July, 1875. In September, same year, the Crocker well, then only 900 feet deep, was yielding 150 barrels per day. In April, 1875, work on the Smethport oil well was begun, and on November 15 a depth of 2,004 feet was reached without finding oil. In August, 1876, the William Haskell well was commenced.

No 1 well on the Tibbett farm is said to be the first success on the East branch. This farm became the property of Lewis Emery, Jr. The Quintuple tract, formerly the Kingsbury estate, contains 4.000 acres. It was purchased in 1875 by Lewis Emery, Jr., for 854,000. Whitney & Wheeler, Free Prentiss and S. L. Wilson were associated with him in this purchase, Wilson subsequently receiving $15,000 advance on his share of purchase money. In 1875 Mr. Emery made his first venture on the Tibbett farm in Toad Hollow, his next on the J. M. DeGolier farm, and the third on the Salem tract of the Quintuple, near a well formerly drilled by Barnsdall, but abandoned at 1,100 feet; a fourth on lot 296, southwest of Custer, near Marshburg, and a fifth at Lewis run on a lease of 3,700 acres. Lescure, the superintendent, reported 123 producing wells in January, 1880, and 681 wells in January, 1884, on the Quintuple. Blair well No. 1, Jackson & Walker's No. 2, at Bradford, and Olmsted's No. 1 on the Sanford farm, were examined in November, 1875, and showed the crude to range from 44° to 40° gravity. In July, 1876, the Kennedy well showed slush oil of 41° gravity, while Prentiss No. 1 showed 44°, and Byron & Co.'s well on the Foster farm 45°. Late in 1876 a gas well was struck on the Bruce Rogers farm, near Bradford. The gas was ignited, and from October 1 to February 1, 1877, jets of flame rose twenty-live to forty feet, burning continually, and making summer dwell in the depths of the forest during the earlier winter months.

The Bradford Oil Company was organized under charter April 20, 1876, as the successor to Chambers, Jones & Co. The principal stockholders were J. T. Jones, Wesley Chambers, L. G. Peck and L. F. Freeman. This company owned a large portion of the site of Bradford from Main street south, the sale of which in lots brought in $40,000. In January, 1882, the company still owned 10,000 acres of the northern field, had 100 producing wells at Four Mile, Indian Creek, West Branch of Tuna, and in other localities, so that each share was valued at $2,000. In June, 1879, J. T. Jones, who purchased Chambors' stock, was elected president, and in 1S81 he bought out Peck & Freeman, when H. E. Brown, of Warren, was elected secretary, and T. J. Powers, treasurer. Thirty-five new wells were added in June, 1876, and the total production for the month was 33,134 barrels. There were 115 wells in the Tuna Valley in July, 1876, twelve of which yielded less than ten barrels per day, and only five yielded over twenty barrels each. During June of this year thirty-five wells were drilled, which are included in the total given. Of tho flowing wells Wing & Lockwood's, near the State line, and Whitney & Co.'s well No. 5, both new wells, took fire. In August, 1876, a gas explosion at Prentiss well No. 9 resulted in two men being burned to death.

The true development of the Bradford District commenced in the centennial year, when operators from the Venango fields turned to the Tuna Valley, extending their wells from Bradford to Limestone, where Job Moses had the first paying well. At this time oil lands were purchased at from $6 to $10 per acre, which in a few months were worth $500 and $1,000 per acre. The Dennis well, located three-quarters of a mile southwest of the old village boundary, was begun in December, 1877, and drilled to 1,719 feet by April, 1878, the mouth being 2,055 feet above the ocean, or about 611 feet above the railroad track at Bradford depot. To watch and record the clays and rocks brought up by the drill, Geologist Leslie appointed a Mr. Hale, who made the complete record published by the department. The McCalmont Oil Company, named from the McCalmont farm, where the company met early successes, was organized in 1877, with David Kirk, F. A. Dilworth, Frank Tack, F. E. Tack, A. H. Tack and I. E. Dean, members. In 1879 they decided to try the northern field, where heavy purchases were made from the Binghams, as the "Triangle well," opened by O. P. Taylor, showed what might be expected in Allegheny county. In May, 1881, the Richburg well was struck, and immediately the McCalmont Company purchased the Ackerman farm of 350 acres, at $90 per acre, and then the Reed farm, which led to so much litigation in order to decide the validity of the Shepherd leases. In the northern territory it claimed 950 acres and twenty-six wells, in 1882, and in McKeau county 406 acres and eighty-eight wells, with fifty new wells under construction.

In 1877 a company of Pennsylvania cheese makers drilled 1,100 feet in Sharon township, on a tributary of the Honeoye, and was known as the Wright well. The well on Horse run, across the line in Genesee township, Allegany county, N. Y., was drilled about this time; while Kemper, of Duke Centre, drilled in the northeast corner of Ceres township, just inside the line of McKean county, to a depth of 1,600 feet, but very little oil was found. Kemper drilled a second well on King's run, which proved dry. It appears that this sand belongs to the Elk county family rather than to the Bradford family. It is said to have its origin in Spring Creek township, in Elk county, and to extend to Wellsville. Taylor's Triangle No. 4, the Schultz wells on Halsey's lands, near Wilcox, the Buffalo Coal Company's wells on Instanter brook, the wells at Smethport, also the wells drilled toward the northeast, were all found to be in the Spring Creek sand. In 1878 the Duke Centre oil field showed the rich oils of the Bradford sand, and the same year wells along the Windfall and round Eldred were drilled. The Angell Oil Company was organized in March, 1880, when C. D. Angell's wells, at Knapp's creek, the Exporters & Producers' wells, on Kendall creek and at Fullerton, were merged, and 960 acres of the Clark, Babcock & Hillings' tract, north of the State line, added, in all fifty-eight producing wells, valued at $400,000. C. D. Angell was chosen general manager; George H. Danforth, president; William R. Lyon, secretary and treasurer, and they, with Charles T. Crocker and E. M. Danforth, formed the board of directors.

Mitchell & Jones had 900 acres, sixty producing wells, and a one-fourth share in forty others, in 1882. Peck & Freeman had 500 acres, fifty producing wells, and a one-eighth interest in 125 acres of leased oil lands. Brown & Jones claimed 125 acres on the head-waterB of Kendall creek, in 1882, with twenty-five producing wells. The Emery Oil Company (L. Emery, Jr., W. R. Weaver and L. E. Hamsher), purchased the Minard run tract, in October, 1883, from C. C. Melvin, A. B. Walker, Howe and associates. The original Moody tract was 7,000 acres, of which 920 were hitherto disposed of, leaving the Emery Company 6,080 acres, ninety-four producing wells, and seven 35,000barrel tanks. The consideration was $300,000. This was formerly proved and found wanting by the P. C. L. & P. Company, but Melvin, Walker & Howe are said to have realized about $1,000,000 from the tract.

In November, 1885, the Kane field, which was an uncertain quantity in the oil market for six years before, came prominently before the people. At this time oil reached $1.07 k, but on November 20 news arrived that the Kane well was making seventy-nine barrels in sixteen hours, and that on December 11 it had reached ninety-three barrels in twenty-four hours. This news, of course, had its effect upon the market. Among the leading producers of this county Capt. Jones leads, with R. J. Straight, the Emery Oil Company, Lewis Emery, Jr., John McKeown, The Associated Producers. Union Oil Company, Forest Oil Company, Anchor Oil Company, Bradford Oil Company, American Oil Company, and the Watson Oil Company. The American Oil Company (P. T. & W. C. Kennedy), were among the leading producers until a year or two ago, when they sold many of their wells.

Wells of the Pioneer Period.* The wells drilled in the Bradford field prior to December 1, 1880, 8,845 of which were producers at that date, are named in the following list: [The few omissions in this list are referred to in the sketches of the boroughs and townships of McKean county. ]

*The list was prepared for the Era by a special si ail of reporters, among whom was the late J. C. McMullen; A. L. Snell. Low manager of the Era, was also in this work. How well they accomplished the work confided to them is made evident by this historical list—the only record in existence which gives the names connected with the Bradford field and the drill work accomplished within its boundaries from 1875 to December. 1880.

Tuna Valley.


Irvine, Irvine Oil Co 2

Mantz, Bennie Bros & Co.. 2 Leonard, Porter & Montgomery 1

Leonard, Allen & Scher

inerhorn 1

Leonard, Harsh & Schreiber 1

Bissell, P Schreiber 1

Moses tract, Harsh it

Schreiber 8

Willis, Shear Bros 1

"State Line Oil Co... 4

•' Stillwell Oil Co.... 2

Woodriug & Co 2

Diamond Oil Co 1

Clark, State Line Oil Co 5

"Eureka Oil Co 3

Patton, J W Humphrey.... 2 Zeliff, " ..2

McKenzie" 1

Carmody, Pt'L&PCo... 2

CII Foster, CH Foster &Co 5

J L Alcomb 1

"PC L&P Co.. 1

Bennett, Hale it Carll 2

"Foster 1

J o Beardsley, James

Rooker 2

Terry, PCL&PCo 4

S, L Wilson, 8 L Wilson.... 1

Miller, M S Miller 3

Watkins, Roberts & Ster

rett 1

Crooks, J L Ak'nmb 2

P Hooker, J L Alcomb & Co 2 Harris, Sill Farm Oil Co... 2 McCartey, Sill Farm Oil Co 2 "Union Oil Co... 2 Mrs Miller, Diamond Petroleum Co 1

Eli Hooker, J C McAllister 2

Wm Beardsley, G V Forman H

Renner, Mitchell 7

H Beardsley, Empire State

Oil Co 9

Cronin, Roberts & Sterrett. 1

Dan Glass.Glassi t Dikeman 1

MeKean, Roberts & Sterrett 1 H Beardsley, State Line Oil

Co 11

H Beardsley, pur Line Oil

Co 1

Bell, Line Oil Co 1

Clark heirs, J R Clark A Co 25

PCL&PCo.. 3

'• CJEverson 5

W B Snow 5

Taft& Payne.. 3

Events lot, Union Oil Co... 2

Seward, Whitney & Wheeler 3

Ford lease, Mabee 1

Fuller, J Mabee 2

"H Trumboer 1

Welsh, II B Porter & Co... 6

"H M Haskell 2

"Heady & McNiel... 2

"Geo S Frank 4

Slocum, Whitney i t Wheeler 7

ED Foster, Foster& Powell 1

P T Kennedy, A C Scott... 2

Railroad Y,P C L &PCo.. 3

Hunt lot, II Clark 1

Ward, A C Scott 6

Bramblee, Foster & Co 2

Parsons lot, .1 B Farrel, ... 2

Houch, J L Alcomb 1

Widow Hahev, Whitney &

Wheeler 2

Sanford lot. Davis & Hilton 3

Mill lot, P T Kennedy 1

Miller lot, Foster, Bartlett

&Co 3

Matteson lot, F E Bradley. 1

A W Newell, S G Mike .... 2

F H Newell.. 2 Brown it Norris lot, Brown

i t Norris 1

Van Scoy lot, Brown it Norris 2

Stone lot. J W Humphrey. 1

Frazier, B Clark 1

T W Cole, Whitney it

Wheeler 1

Balton Bros. F E Bradley .. 1

Howard, "... 1

Wagner, O G Emery & Co. 1

Colegrevc, Walker & Co... 1

Wagner lot, W W Martin.. 1

Whalen lot, A DcGolier 1

Fairbanks. Houghton,

Hanks & Co 2

Neye lot, John Potts 1

Hewett lot, Whitney &

Wheeler 1

Rutherford. Whitney it

Wheeler 1

DeGolier lot. Whitney i t

Wheeler 1

Leigh lot, Whitncv i t

Wheeler..., 1

Parsons lot, Whitney it

Wheeler 1

Osgood lot, Thomas Bradley 1

Bradley lot, Thomas Bradley 1

Butts lot, J E Butts, Jr.... 1 Brennan, Whitney &

Wheeler 1

Baker lot, PC L& PCo... 1 Webster lot, Whitney &

Wheeler 2

Cheese Factory lot, C F

Allen 2

Holmes, Mrs Holmes 1

Tibbett lot, Emery Oil Co.. 1

Acklev, ". 2 Fisher", "..2

Peterson, " 1

Matteson," 1

Cutting, .. 5

Cockroft, .. 5 Campbell, Whitney it

Wheeler 1

Rogers, Bradford Gas Co.. 1

Brown, " 1

Raub, PCL&PCo 9

"G W Raub 2

"C Everson 2

Lauc, Smith it

Thomson 1

Case lot, A K Harrow 1

Fisher it Lane, E O Emerson 4

Fisher it Lane, Husband it

Wilson 2

Fisher it Lane, Mechanics'

Oil Co 2

Fisher it Lane, W A Pullman & Co 2

Fisher & Lane, J D Lupher 2 Derby it

Jones 2

Fisher it Lane, Sam Smith

it Thomson 2

Canfleld it Brady, Moore &

Pettibone 3

Canfleld it Bradv, McManus

& O'Dell 3

Pierce lot, Sterrett & Roberts 2

Patterson lot, I L Shank. . 2

Total 310

(Abandoned.) Irvine, Van Vleck i t Mitchell 4

Baillet, Short i t Co 1

"Eclipse Oil Co.... 1

Huntington, unknown 1

Cogswell, Tait i t Schermcr

horn 1

Hapgood, H L Taylor i t Co I Moses tract. Harsh &

Schreiber 4

Willis, Shear Bros 1

State Line Oil Co.. 1

•' Miller 2

Joseph Fritz 1

Haskell &O' Dell.. 1 Alanson Clark, State Line

Oil Co 1

('lark, J W Humphrey 2

Whittaker, PC Li t PCo.. 1

Terry, "" ".. 3

S L Wilson, S L Wilson 4

P Hooker, Buchanan & Sons 1

Harris, Sill Farm Oil Co... 2

McCartey, Louks Bros 2

Morris & Barse. 4
Parsons & Co... 1
Randolph Par-
ties 1

McCartey, James Rooker.. 2 Mrs Mueller. Diamond Petroleum Co 2

Mrs Mueller, P C L i t P Co 1

Eli Hooker, G V Forman.. 5

Wm Beardsley " .. 2

Pat Lynch, Pat Lynch 1

Cronin, McMann 1

Dan Glass, J E Butts, Jr... 2

Jones, Harris i t Slocum... 2 Empire State farm, Sam

Woodring 1

Hinchy, Ottman • 2

Buchanan, Heald 2

'' Ottman 1

"Buchanan i t Co 1

Wolcott, Harsh & Schreiber 1

""Forman.. fi

JO Beardsley, unknown.. 4 "Limestone

Petroleum Co 3

Unknown lot, Geo V Forman I

McKean, unknown 1

Clark heirs, J R Clark i t Co 1

PC Li t PCo. 1

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