To understand the current shale boom, we take a step back in time to explore the history of oil in Texas… The Permian Basin story.
“Earlier this year, I drove to the site of Santa Rita No. 1. Named after the patron saint of impossible dreams, the Santa Rita was the oil well that launched the first Permian Basin boom and has been fueling the dreams of West Texas wildcatters ever since. The well was a classic Hollywood gusher when Frank T. Pickrell and his partners first struck oil there in 1923, but it’s a lonely site today. The metal derrick stands out like a rusting nail against the yellowed grass and surrounding scrub brush. Wind rattles the tin shack housing the rig’s ancient engine. There are no remnants of the company town that once thrived there. There’s nothing significant about this scene. Just another abandoned well in the West Texas desert. But next to the derrick is a plaque that proclaims that the events that once unfolded there “stretch the imagination.”
Boomtown is a 10-episode podcast series produced in partnership with Imperative Entertainment.
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