Pending Oil Bill
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Pending Oil Bill

(Galveston Daily News, February 19, 1901)

Beaumont, Tex., Feb. 18--Independent Operators Say It Is A Scheme of Big Operators To Control The Field--No Objection to Caps--But They Do Object To Closing Wells Until Tankage and Pipe Lines are Secure--Temporary Storage Plan--Outlay The Bill Would Impose Virtually Bars the Small Operators, They Claim.

A large number of oil men here are still raising a considerable disturbance because of the bill which is pending in the legislature, and which is calculated to regulate the production of oil in the state, or more properly, to regulate the manner of drilling. The bill is characterized by independent operators here as a scheme to control the field by the big oil men or the man who first gets into the field with tankage and pipe lines. A gentleman to the News correspondent today was bitter against the passage of the bill and said he looked upon it as a scheme to get control until sufficient tankage and pipe lines have been secured to hold the oil.

Now it seems to be a plan here among oil men that if they strike oil, to store it for time being in earthen tanks. Rather, to build up large levees and receive and hold the oil in these. It is estimated that it would require $250,000 even to begin the construction of an oil tank and pipe line, and no one cares to go to this expense. And few of them could afford to do it unless they knew they had a well that would justify the expenditure of that much money.

As a conclusion to the whole matter, these anti-oil legislation men merely ask the legislature to give them an opportunity to show their side of the case and not to pass a bill which may be very injurious to large numbers of producers here, without even those who are supporting the bill knowing anything of its effects.

Gladys City well No. 1, the first one to start since the Lucas well was struck, has stuck at a depth of several hundred feet, and it will probably be several days before they succeed in getting the pipe loose. Hamill Brothers, contractors, who dug the Lucas well, have charge of it, but are unable to explain why the pipe struck. It was done Friday night some time, and no one seems to know just how it happened or when until the machine refused to move the rotary.

Sturm and Bros., contractors on the Southwestern Oil Company's Adam lease, began work Saturday morning and yesterday afternoon had reached a depth of 400 feet, and everything was working smoothly at last accounts.

These two are the only wells which have as yet began drilling, though there are several that are ready to begin as soon as some small parts of the machinery arrive. The oil field in the vicinity of the Lucas well is rapidly becoming an active place. There are now 12 derricks completed in that neighborhood and many more are starting. Stores are springing up there and soon it may be expected that it will become an active and characteristic mining village. (comp. by W. T.Block)

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