The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 50, July 1946 - April, 1947

THE SOUTHWESTERN HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. L JULY, 1946 No. 1
Ceras ad the Oil Hdwstry
C. A. WARNER
T HE OIL industry is as much a part of Texas as its cattle
ranches, its missions, its plantations, or its Llano Estacado,
and knowledge that Texas ranks first in the oil industry is,
world-wide.
Extending approximately 800 miles from Brownsville to Tex-
line and about 760 miles from El Paso to Orange, Texas has
a coast line of about 400 miles and a total area of nearly 264,000
square miles. Its surface topography varies' from the flat coastal
plains to the rugged mountainous areas of the Big Bend region
and the extreme western part of the state. It has land suitable
for practically every purpose; its agricultural products are
as varied as its climate and its topography; cattle-raising is
one of its oldest industries; and metallic and nonmetallic min-
erals are mined or quarried in several areas. Of all its products,
however, those taken from the earth by the oil industry are by
far the most important economically, and they are indigenous
to all portions of the state.
Texas contains 254 counties, 175 of which produce oil or gas
or both in commercial quantities. It contains the largest oil
and gas fields in the world, and its reserves of crude oil repre-
sent approximately 55 per cent of the estimated reserves of the
nation. It has more than 37,000 miles of oil pipe lines, more than
13,250 miles of gas pipe lines, 95 refineries, 199 natural gasoline
plants (including 33 cycling plants), and 45 carbon-black plants.
Its reported production has increased from forty-eight barrels
of oil and a small quantity of gas in 1889 to more than seven
hundred million barrels of oil and more than two trillion cubic
feet of gas per year.
The oil and gas produced in Texas are secured from strata
of many geologic ages at depths ranging from a few feet to
below 11,800 feet. It is the only region in the world from which
oil and gas are produced from altered igneous rocks, salt dome

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 50, July 1946 - April, 1947. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101117/. Accessed July 6, 2015.