Mr. Greer
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Mr. Greer Talks

(Galveston Daily News, February 19,1901)

Austin, Tex., Feb. 18--Hon. R. A. Greer of Beaumont returned this morning from a visit to that place. He says there is no decrease in the excitement over the oil discovery and that the city is full of visitors and prospective investors. There is great activity in the lease and sale of lands, the county clerk's force being considerably behind in recording lease papers and deeds.There has been a big advance in land values throughout that section. Lands that were formerly held at $12 to $15 per acre are being sold at $35 to $50 per acre. One tract of 150 acres, situated some 20 miles from the great Lucas gusher, and which held at $25 an acre before the oil strike, has been sold at $55 per acre to parties who will prospect for oil on it.

The oil pipe line, running from the Lucas well to the ship side of the channel leading to Port Arthur, has been completed. Ths distance is 18 miles in an air line. The metal oil tanks which are being erected to take care of the oil from the Lucas well will be completed as soon as the necessary rivets, bolts, etc., with which to put the pieces together arrive. This will be very soon. The tanks are each of 50,000 barrels capacity. Three of them with an aggregate capacity of 150,000 barrels are located at a point on the pipe line midway between the well and Port Arthur at El Vista. A pumping station is being established at this midway point, and the oil will be pumped from the midway tanks through the remainder of the pipe line to the terminal tanks, where the oil will run directed into the oil tank steamers and shipped to the markets of the world. It is calculated that the oil from the well to the midway tanks can flow by gravitation, and that there will be no need of pumping stations at the point of origin.

There are many new drilling rigs being set up in the new district, and more of them are already at work putting down wells. It is said that 28 oil well derricks can be seen from the Lucas well, and there are many others scattered throughout that section. The results from a number of wells will be known within the next few weeks, and the extent of the oil territory will be thereby largely determined.

It is not contemplated to erect a refinery at this time, as it is considered that the crude oil has more value than could be gotten out of it through a refining process. It is understood that some large contracts for the sale of oil from this well are being negotiated. It is probable that an average price of about 40 ents per barrel will be obtained for the oil. It is also said that the Southern Pacific and the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe are considering the matter of using the oil for fuel for locomotives, as it would be a big saving over the cost of coal.

Mr. Greer says an effort is being made to create the impression that Senator Beaty's bill, now before the House to regulate the drilling of oil, is intended to be in the interest of the rich against the poor. Mr. Greer says this is absolutely untrue. Preparations are being made to drill for oil in the town of Beaumont, and it is necessary to have some such measure as the Beaty bill to protect the city from fire. (comp. by W. T. Block)

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