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How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made - George Krumme

How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made - George Krumme

Bristow Historical Society, Inc.
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00:00:00 - How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made

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Partial Transcript: “How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made”
Narrated by George Krumme

GK: My name is George Krumme. I’m a partner in Krumme Oil Company of Bristow, Oklahoma.

In the early 1980’s, J. B. Red, a Stillwater oil man, contacted my brother and me with a proposition. A friend of his, Sam Myers, had saved a four-reel, silent moving picture made for his father’s company many decades earlier.

Segment Synopsis: Background to preserving the movie "How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made", filmed in 1917-1918

Keywords: Cushing Field; Cushing Oil Field; Cushing-Webb Oil Company; J. B. Red; Krumme Oil Company; Oilton; Oklahoma State University; Sam Myers; manually operated camera

Subjects: Cushing Oil Field; Cushing-Webb Oil Company; Oilton; background

Hyperlink: George Krumme
00:01:27 - A WEEK'S TRIP IN THE GREAT CUSHING OIL FIELD IN OKLAHOMA FOUR REELS REEL ONE THE LARGEST HIGH GRADE OIL FIELD IN THE WORLD OIL FIELD TOWNS OILTON 15 YEARS AGO

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Partial Transcript: The caption says Oilton 15 years ago, but it should say Oilton today and Oilton 15 years ago, because the first scenes are of downtown Oilton during the boom. Oilton was not even founded until 1915, three years after the discovery well was drilled.

Segment Synopsis: Scenes of 1917-1918 Oklahoma, both small town Oilton, near where the discovery well was to be drilled, and a country home.

Keywords: 101 Ranch; Creek County; Cushing Field; Five Civilized Tribes; Montgomery Ward; Oilton; Pawnee County

Subjects: Authentic scenes of early Oklahoma; Scenes of Oilton; log houses

GPS: Oilton, Oklahoma
Map Coordinates: 36.085046, -96.586629
00:03:48 - BUSY OILTON TO-DAY AND WHAT MAKES IT

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Partial Transcript: Cushing Field was discovered in 1912. It was named for Cushing even though the town is 10 or 12 miles west of the field. At the time, it was the closest town. Drumright was founded near the discovery well during the following year, and Oilton was founded a couple of years later.

Segment Synopsis: The Cushing Field discovery well and a brief introduction to Tom Slick.

Keywords: C. B. Shaffer; Cushing; Cushing Field; Drumright; Drumright (Okla.); King of the Wildcatters; Oilton; Slick, Tom, 1883-1930; Tom Slick; Wheeler farm

Subjects: Cushing Oil Field discovery well; Tom Slick "King of the Wildcatters"

Hyperlink: Tom Slick
00:04:44 - DRUMRIGHT FOUR YEARS OLD POPULATION 15000

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Partial Transcript: At the first strong showing of oil and gas, Slick had the driller fill the hole with mud and water and invert a wash tub over the casing with a heavy drilling tool on top. He then cut the telephone line to the Wheeler home

Segment Synopsis: Tom Slick discovery well as the beginning of the Cushing Oil Field

Keywords: Cushing; Drumright; Tom Slick; Wheeler home; landman

Subjects: Wheeler home; first strong showing of oil and gas; livery teams and notaries in Cuishing

Hyperlink: Landman
00:05:21 - BUILDING A DERRICK

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Partial Transcript: Drilling with cable tools was fairly well standardized in the early days of the industry. All of the original drilling in the Cushing Field was done with what was called a standard rig, using steam power.

Segment Synopsis: Building an oil derrick in 1917 - 1918

Keywords: boiler; rig irons; rotary drilling; standard rig; steam engine; wire lines

Subjects: building a derrick; oil derricks in 1917 - 1918

00:06:03 - DRILLING

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Partial Transcript: Drilling was done using the walking beam, but the tools had to be below floor level before it could be used. So to start the well, a spudding line was run from the crank to a sliding shoe which was hooked over the drilling line just above the bull wheels.

Segment Synopsis: Drilling using a waling beam is described.

Keywords: sliding shoe; spudder; spudding line; walking beam

Subjects: drilling using the walking beam; spudder replaced the standard rig; starting a well with a spudding line

Hyperlink: Walking Beams
00:06:41 - UNLOADING CASING AT THE RAILROAD

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Partial Transcript: If the well turned out to be a producer, the steam engine was replaced with a big single cylinder engine, and the rig and derrick were kept to pump and service the well. If the derrick was blown down, the rig was kept in operation but was referred to as a bob tailed rig.

Segment Synopsis: Scene of unloading casing from a railroad car using mules and a wagon.

Keywords: bob tailed rig; gin poles; single cylinder engine; unloading casing

Subjects: unloading casing; unloading casing from railroad cars; using mules to unload casing

00:07:40 - LOADING CASING AT THE CIMARRON RIVER NEAR OILTON

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Partial Transcript: As you can see, the casing being loaded here is too large to be production casing. Big casing was used in drilling the well. Drilling at the Cushing Field was difficult because there were numerous shallow sand formations that produced water.

Segment Synopsis: Casing being loaded from the banks of the Cimarron River to a wagon on the bridge over the river. Narration includes the completion of the discovery well.

Keywords: Bartlesville producing sand; Cushing Field; Oswego limestone; Wheeler farm; Wheeler sand; production casing; uralitic phase

Subjects: discovery well completed; drilling at the Cushing field; loading casing to be used in drilling

Hyperlink: Uralite
00:09:11 - HAULING CASING TO THE WELL

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Partial Transcript: Teamsters prefer horses instead of mules for hauling in the oil fields. Draft horses were bigger and stronger. Farmers, and the US Army in World War I, preferred mules because they were heartier, but they were also more stubborn.

Segment Synopsis: Casing is being hauled to the drilling site. The narration includes a comparison of the Cushing Field peak daily production in 1915 to the entire state of Oklahoma average daily production in 2002.

Keywords: Bartlesville sand; Cushing Field; draft horses; mules

Subjects: Cushing Field peak production; Oklahoma average barrels per day; hauling casing using wagons and mules; test well drilled to Bartlesville sand

00:09:57 - MOVING HOTEL BETWEEN MEALS

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Partial Transcript: Ironically, some of the biggest Bartlesville wells were not in the Bartlesville sand at all. The Cushing structure is bald-headed.

Segment Synopsis: Scene of horses pulling a wagon with a hotel across a wooden bridge. Some biggest Bartlesville wells were not in the Bartlesville sand.

Keywords: Bartlesville sand; Mississippi lime; Simpson sands; Wilcox sand; bald-headed

Subjects: Bartlesville wells; Horses moving a hotel across a bridge

00:10:18 - PREPARING THE EATS NOON

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Partial Transcript: Between Drumright and Oilton, in an area of a few square miles, even the Bartlesville is missing and the drill goes directly from the Redfork into productive Arbuckle limestone. Some Arbuckle wells made five or six thousand barrels a day.

Keywords: Arbuckle limestone; Bartlesville sand; Drumright; Oilton; Redfork; Sinclair worker; USGS Survey; United States Geological Survey

Subjects: Workers washing and eating; drilling into Arbuckle limestone; missing Bartlesville sand

00:11:21 - A WEEK’S TRIP IN THE GREAT CUSHING OIL FIELD IN OKLAHOMA FOUR REELS REEL TWO CASING CREW AT WORK

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Partial Transcript: In a standard rig, the big bull wheels which held the drilling cable blocked the face of the derrick so the casing wrap was placed opposite the crank, and the casing was wagoned in from the walking beam side using a front wagon and a back wagon. This pipe looks like seven-inch casing so it may be the final inside production string.

Segment Synopsis: Crew working to attach more casing pipe segments, including using front and back wagons and a "never slip" which is a device used to hold the upper part of a drill string.

Keywords: bull ropes; bull wheel; bull wheels; casing pole; casing wrap; d-thread casing; half-wheel; never-slip; round-thread casing; seven-inch casing; tug pulley

Subjects: casing string; drilling terms; screwing pipe together; standard rig casing

00:12:51 - HAULING STORAGE TANK TO THE TANK FARM

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Partial Transcript: Back to the subject of the Arbuckle limestone, one Arbuckle well north of Drumright still makes about a hundred and fifteen barrels a day along with ungodly amounts of water. New wells are still occasionally drilled to the Arbuckle.

Segment Synopsis: Short scene showing a tractor pulling a string of wagons, and commentary on the Arbuckle limestone production as of the time of the narration (2003).

Subjects: Arbuckle limestone production; hauling storage tanks

00:13:11 - SHOOTING THE WELL THE SHOOTER ARRIVES

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Partial Transcript: Liquid nitroglycerin is highly unstable and very dangerous to handle. Shooting continued to be the most popular way to stimulate a well until the development of sand fracking around 1950.

Segment Synopsis: Shooting a well with nitroglycerin and with sand fracking.

Keywords: Nitroglycerin; jelled water; napalm; nitroglycerin; sand fracking

Subjects: contemporary fracking with jelled water; early sand fracking proportions with napalm; preparing to shoot the well

00:13:43 - SOUNDING FOR DEPTH

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Partial Transcript: Stanolind Oil Company got a patent on the sand fracking process and it collected royalties on every job.

Segment Synopsis: Workers estimating the depth of the well and talk of the Stanolind Oil Company patent on sand fracking.

Keywords: Amoco; Standard Oil of Indiana; Stanolind; Stanolind Oil Company; Tulsa; sand fracking; the house that frack built

Subjects: estimating well depth; sand fracking patent

00:14:01 - PREPARING THE CHARGE

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Partial Transcript: I’m sorry to say I don’t know what the washing in the bucket is accomplishing. By the time we started in the business a blasting gel had been developed and it was much safer than nitroglycerin.

Segment Synopsis: The shooter preps the tubes for the nitroglycerin, and description of using a "go devil" to set off the shot.

A "go devil" is a dart dropped into an oil well to explode the dynamite or nitroglycerin

Keywords: Zero Hour Bomb Company; go devil

Subjects: blasting gel safer than nitroglycerin; setting off the shot

00:14:57 - POURING NITRO-CLYCERINE INTO TUBE AND LOWERING IN THE WELL

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Partial Transcript: When sand fracking put the well shooting trade out of business, the Zero Hour Bomb Company shortened its name to Zebco and began manufacturing fishing reels.

Segment Synopsis: The shooter adds nitroglycerin into the tube and the well is shot, resulting in a gusher.

Keywords: Zebco; Zero Hour Bomb Company; gusher; sand fracking

Subjects: Pouring nitroglycerin into the tube; Zebco making fishing reels; a gusher

00:15:48 - LAYING PIPE LINE TO THE TANK FARM

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Partial Transcript: The Cushing Field has produced about a half billion barrels of oil. Early flush production overloaded the hastily constructed pipelines. It broke the price of oil and kept it low for several years. But Tom Slick and others found a solution.

Segment Synopsis: A crew screws together pipe joints for a pipe line. The narrator relates the Tom Slick solution for storing oil during times of low prices.

Keywords: Bristow; Cushing Field; Frisco Railroad; Oil storage tanks; Tom Slick; building a pipeline; latongs; oil tanks; pipe-jack; pipeline

Subjects: oil storage tanks; screwing together pipe jointss

00:17:06 - THETANK FARM

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Partial Transcript: Like Tom Slick, others built tank farms, and at one time about 23 million barrels of oil was stored at or near the Cushing Field, which is part of the reason why Cushing became “the pipeline crossroads of the world.” About 30 million barrels of oil storage capacity is currently located in the vicinity of Cushing.

Segment Synopsis: Short scene of a tank farm.

Keywords: Cushing; Cushing Field; Tom Slick; the pipeline capital of the world

Subjects: Tank farms for storing oil

00:17:31 - A FEW SCENES AMONG THE OIL WELLS ADJOINING OILTON OIL WELLS IN THE CIMARRON RIVER

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Partial Transcript: The Cimarron River between Drumright and Oilton ran through one of the richest parts of the field. Ownership of the mineral rights under the river bed up to the line of highest water was claimed by both the federal government and the state of Oklahoma, but their claims were disputed by the owners of the adjoining Indian allotments.

Segment Synopsis: Oil wells are shown along the Cimarron River, and even on raised land in the middle of the river. The federal, state, and Indian governments all claimed ownership.

Keywords: Cimarron River; Drumright; Indian allotments; Oilton; mneral rights; river bed; river bed leases

Subjects: Oil wells built along the Cimarron River; river bed mineral rights

00:18:24 - A SCENE FROM THE CUSHING-WEBB OIL CO'S SUB-DIVISION

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Partial Transcript: The Santa Fe built a railroad line from Cushing into Oilton with a spur to Drumright, and the Oil Belt Terminal Railroad tied into the Short Line from Jennings to Oilton. Both lines carried passengers, but their main goal was to deliver supplies and take out crude oil.

Segment Synopsis: Scenes of oil derricks, tanks, and plains of the Cushing-Webb sub-division. Bernard Jones introduces Tom Slick and Bernice Frates.

Keywords: Bernard B. Jones; Bernard Jones; Bernice Frates; Bristow; Cusing; Depew; Drumright; Frates; J.A. Frates; Jennings; Joseph A. Frates; Joseph Frates; Oil Belt Terminal Railroad; Oilton; Okmulgee; Santa Fe; Santa Fe Railroad; Shamrock; Short Line; Tom Slick

Subjects: Bristow to Okmulgee railroad; Santa Fe railroad; Tom Slick marries Bernice Frates; oil derricks; oil tanks

00:20:07 - HAULING FLOW TANK TO THE WELL 00:20:21 - A WEEK’S TRIP IN THE GREAT CUSHING OIL FIELD IN OKLAHOMA FOUR REELS REEL THREE LAYING OIL PIPE LINE FROM THIS FIELD TO THE GULF OF MEXICO

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Partial Transcript: Numerous pipelines were built to carry away the flood of crude oil. The Texas Company and Magnolia both laid a line all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. Note that this scene was posed. Men in suits don’t just stand around very often, and this prehistoric Ditch Witch is rotating but not moving forward.

Segment Synopsis: Pipelines were built to transport oil. The McMan Oil Company built a pipeline to Healdton to tie into the Magnolia gathering system. Magnolia had a pipeline to the Gulf of Mexico.

Keywords: Arbuckle; Cushing; Ditch Witch; Gulf of Mexico; Healdton; Healdton (Okla.); James Chapman; Magnolia; McMan Oil Company; Robert McFarland; Texas Company

Subjects: Magnolia gathering system; The McMan Oil Company; pipeline built by McMan to Healdton

00:21:32 - OIL FIELD CATASTROPHES INSURANCE COMPANIES ARE THE LOSERS TANKS STRUCK BY LIGHTENING OIL FIRE ON TIGER CREEK

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Partial Transcript: During the flush production days, lots of Cushing oil was stored in big earthen pits, and there were several spectacular fires set by lightening. Lightening also set tanks afire. Sometimes a 55 thousand barrel would catch fire and burn at the top of the tank.

Segment Synopsis: Oil fires are shown in earthen pits, tanks, and the Tiger Creek. Companies used a cannon to blow a hole in the bottom of a tank for the oil to drain which could then be recovered.

Keywords: Cushing; Drumright Oil Field Museum; cannon; earthen pits; oil tank first; struck by lightening

Subjects: blowing a hole in the tank; draining a tank on fire; earthen pit fires; oil pit fires; oil tank fires set by lightening

00:22:29 - RESULT OF A 00000 GASOLINE EXPLOSION FIVE MILES OF CUSHING-WEBB OIL CO’S SUB-DIVISION

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Partial Transcript: Notice that these tanks are riveted tanks. Pressure vessels had to be riveted because electric arc welding had not yet been perfected. Most of the oil field tanks in those days were bolted tanks, and all the stock tanks and big storage tanks were bolted.

Segment Synopsis: Tanks that were damaged in a huge gasoline plant explosion are shown. The narrator talks about the Chapman and McFarland ties to Tulsa, the Glenn Pool, and the sale of McMan Oil Company to Magnolia.

Keywords: Glenn Pool; Holdenville; Holdenville Oil and Gas; James Chapman; Phillip Chapman; Robert McFarland; Sapulpa; Tulsa; riveted tanks; weldd tanks

Subjects: Remains after a huge gasoline explosion

00:24:22 - JUNK CREW SAVING WHAT'S LEFT

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Partial Transcript: The Chapman’s and McFarland were already well-off, but they really made their money when they drilled leases they took in the Cushing Field. At times the McMan was the major producer in the field.

Segment Synopsis: A crew is seen loading scrap left after the gasoline explosion. Chapman and McFarland were very successful in the Cushing Field.

Keywords: Horace Bernard; James Chapman; McMan; Mrs. James Chapman; Pawhuska; Robert McFarland; Tall Grass Prairie Preserve; mCmAN; pAWHUSKA; tALL gRASS pRAIRIE pRESERVE

Subjects: Chapman family charitable foundation; crew loading scrap; horse drawn wagons carrying scrap metal

00:25:48 - GASOLINE PLANTS & REFINERIES NEAR OILTON

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Partial Transcript: The one non-family owner of the McMan was E. T. Harwell, who owned one-sixth of the stock so he became quite rich. He built a mansion at 22nd Street and Riverside which his widow gave to the Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa and today Harwelden is the council’s home.

Segment Synopsis: A gasoline plant and refinery near Oilton is shown, with tanks, and pipelines. E. T. Harwell is introduced. Casing-head gas, or drip gasoline, is discussed. Wooden tanks are described, as is oil and gas waste and the attempts to recover oil waste.

Keywords: Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa; Cushing Field; E. T. Harwell; East Texas pool; Harwelden; Magnolia; McMan; Prudhoe Bay; Prudhoe Bay (Alaska); Riverside; Riverside Drive; Tiger Creek; Tulsa; anticline; casing-head gas; circulating tank; dam; drip gasoline; natural gas; railroad tank cars; redwood; skimming crafts; stratigraphic traps; tank cars; transportation facilities shortage; wooden tanks

Subjects: Cushing Field production compared to East Texas and Prudhoe Bay; McMan oil storage tanks; anticlinal traps and stratigraphic traps; collecting drip gasoline; collecting wasted oil with skimming crafts; drip gasoline available for pumpers; oil and gas waste; skimmer on Tiger Creek; water tanks made of redwood

Hyperlink: Harwelden
00:30:14 - A WEEK’S TRIP IN THE GREAT CUSHING OIL FIELD IN OKLAHOMA FOUR REELS REEL FOUR

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Partial Transcript: As I related earlier, Joseph Frates promoted a town site in the edge of a new oil pool on the route of his new railroad from Bristow to Okmulgee. Since Tom Slick had put up most of the money, Frates chose him to be the president of the railroad, and he also named the town after Slick.

Segment Synopsis: A tank farm is shown in the movie. The narrator continues the story of the railroad being built from Bristow to Okmulgee and the connection to Tom Slick

Keywords: Bristow; Joseph Frates; Okmulgee; Slick; Tom Slick

Subjects: Bristow to Okmulgee railroad; Slick, Oklahoma; scenes of a tank farm

00:31:14 - FILLING TANK CARS WITH GASOLINE

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Partial Transcript: Soon after the Cushing Field was discovered, Tom Slick’s best friend, Charles F. Urschel, married Tom’s sister Mary, and took over the management of Slick’s business affairs. When Slick died at the age of forty-six in 1930, Urschel became trustee of the estate.

Segment Synopsis: The movie shows tank railroad tank cars being loaded with gasoline. The narrator relates the story of Tom Slick's death, Mary Slick Urschel's death, Charles Urschel marrying Bernice Frates Slick, and of Charles Urschel's kidnapping.

Keywords: Bernice Frates Slick; Charles F. Urschel; Charles Urschel; Dallas; Depression; FBI; George "Machine Gun" Kelly; Mary Slick; Oklahoma City; Urschel kidnapping; Urschel, Charles F., 1890-1970

Subjects: Charles Urschel kidnapping; Railroad tank cars being filled with gasoline; Tom Slick, Bernice Frates Slick, Charles Urschel, and Mary Slick Urschel

00:33:04 - MR. O.A. BREWER DIRECTOR OF STANDARD OIL OF WYOMING AND A LOT OWNER IN THE CUSHING WEBB OIL CO’S SUB-DIVISION MR. PAUL A. WINTERSTEEN OUR SECRETARY MR. S.M. MYERS OUR TREASURER OUR CHIEF ENGINEER INTERIOR OF OUR OFFICE CUSHING-WEBB OIL CO’S OFFICE LETTERS OF RECOMMEDATION BETTER BUY A LOT AND GET ONE OF

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Partial Transcript: Along with the film itself, we got a copy of some remarks made by Sam Meyers who had saved his father’s movie all those decades. Included was a message that probably was part of a flyer or brochure for the benefit of the people who had watched the film. Here’s the pitch:

Segment Synopsis: The final segment shows some of the Cushing-Webb officers, engineer, offices, letters of recommendation from local Stillwater entities, and a stock certificate.

Keywords: Cimarron River; Cushing; Cushing Oil Field; Cushing-Webb; Cushing-Webb Oil Company; Drumright; How Oklahoma Millionaires Are Made; Jennings; Mr. O.A. Brewer; Mr. Paul A. Wintersteen; O.A. Brewer; Oilton; Paul A. Wintersteen; S. M. Meyers; Sam Meyers; Tulsa; Yale

Subjects: Cushing-Webb office; Cushing-Webb officers; area map showing drilling site; capturing the pitch on film; letters of recommendation; lot numbers; the pitch to invest in the discovery well