Oil in the Deep South: A History of the Oil Business in Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, 1859-1945
The first wildcatters in the Southeastern states of Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida began drilling around the turn of the century, but success eluded them. Except for a few insignificant shallow gas fields in northern Alabama, all early wells - more than two hundred of them by 1925 - proved to be dry. Huge riches from petroleum were being reaped in nearby Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas. It appeared that the Mississippi River was a barrier, an underground dike which prevented the oil and gas from crossing into adjoining states. This is the first book to document the history of the petroleum business in Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. It records a statistical and chronological summary and highlights the many people and companies involved in the oil industry during its early days in this region. After too many discouraging years of exploration, success finally came in 1939. The big payoff was the discovery of the Tinsley Oil Field in Yazoo County, Mississippi, a field that eventually produced more than 200 million barrels. Then came repeated successes as an amazing number of huge oil and gas fields were found during the years 1940 to 1945, even when the nation was in the throes of World War II. By the end of the war, petroleum had become a major industry in the Southeast.
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