Pennsylvania oil well celebrates 150 years of continuous production

By Phaedra Friend Troy

The oldest continually producing oil well in the world celebrated its 150th birthday this week, according to a report from State Impact news agency.

First producing oil in August 1861, the McClintock No. 1 oil well is located in Venango County, Pennsylvania, and was designated an American Treasure by the National Park Service.

The aging well produces about 40 barrels of oil a year, which goes to the American Refinery Group, State Impact reported.

According to Pennsylvania Heritage magazine, ownership of the well changed hands a number of times: from the McClintock family, to the Bower family, to the Brundred Oil Corporation, to Quaker State, to Pennzoil to Royal Dutch Shell. In 2000, Shell transferred ownership of the McClintock No. 1 oil well to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC).

According to PHMC, the well is located about 240 yards from the historic Drake well in Pennsylvania, which ushered in the commercial production of petroleum in the US.

PHMC’s Drake Well Museum, lauded as the “birthplace of the oil industry,” maintains the McClintock No. 1 well and occasionally pumps the well to keep its historic status.

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