April 14, 1865
John Wilkes Booth shoots President Lincoln. Why is this related to the oil field, you ask? We know that Booth was a well known actor but what isn't well known is that he took his substantial earnings from acting and invested them in an oil well in Pennsylvania. He bought a 3.5 acre lease near Franklin, Pa and formed the Dramatic Oil Company in 1864. His first well produced about 25 barrels per day. His mistake was attempting an early form of fracking called "shooting" where explosives were dropped into the well and detonated. Unfortunately for Booth, his shooting destroyed the well. He lost his money in his oil venture.
Irony, however, knows no bounds. About two months after he caught and killed for the assassination of Lincoln, a well was drilled near his lease that came in at 500 barrels per day.
April 19, 1897
The Duryea brothers present the first commercially available motorcar powered by gasoline. A total of 13 were produced. Environmentalists protest. Global temperature increases several degrees.
It took a while for gasoline to catch on. Three years later, most automobiles were powered by either steam or electricity.
April 13, 1974
The worlds deepest oil well was drilled in Oklahoma. The Bertha Rogers #1 was drilled for gas to a depth of 31,441 feet. It took 504 days to drill and held the record until 2004.