JANUARY 1862: ELISABETH WATTS EXPORTS FIRST PENNSYLVANIA OIL TO LONDON

The first oil export of US crude oil using the Elisabeth Watts cargo ship came soon after Edwin L. Drake drilled the first American oil well along Oil Creek in northwestern Pennsylvaniai, in Venango and Crawford counties. After his historic discovery near Titusville, Drake bought up all the 40-gallon whiskey barrels he could find to transport his oil on barges down the Allegheny River to Pittsburgh refineries.
In the year 1861, Peter Wright & Sons, exporters from Philadelphia were responsible for making the first export of crude oil to London in a 224-tonne capacity conventional cargo ship, the Elisabeth Watts. Launched in 1847 by the shipbuilding firm of J. & C.C. Morton of Thomaston, Maine, the Elizabeth Watts was about 96 feet long with a draft of 11 feet. . “She was a two masted, square-rigged ship well suited for the Atlantic cargo trade of the day,” noted J. & C.C. Morton, the Maine shipbuilding firm that constructed the 224-ton brig in 1847.
To reach Philadelphia docks, the oil would have to travel overland across Pennsylvania. The nearest railroad to Oil Creek’s prolific fields was a grueling trek on muddy roads clogged with teamsters’ wagons. The preferred railhead, owing to primitive road conditions, was the Philadelphia and Erie Railroad station at Miles Mills (now Union City), 20 miles north of Titusville.
From Miles, railroad flatcars laboriously stacked with barrels and pulled by a steam locomotive could make their way eastward to Philadelphia. Along the route, saltwater residue would eat at the barrels’ glue and cause leakage. The risk of fire or explosion would be constant.
Despite the hazards and difficulty, 901 barrels of Pennsylvania crude and 428 barrels of refined kerosene made the trip. Each 40-gallon barrel weighed over 60 pounds empty and 360 pounds to 400 pounds when full.
On November 18, 1861, the 901 barrels of Pennsylvania oil and 428 barrels of refined kerosene were loaded on the Elisabeth Watts. Forty-five days later, on January 9, 1862, the U.S. brig sails down the Thames River to arrive at London’s Victoria Dock. It will take 12 days to unload the 1,329 barrels. Not much more is known about the Elizabeth Watts. She carried the world’s first really substantial cargo of oil and arrived safely in England. The three British consignees awaiting the cargo were G. Crowshaw & Company, Coates & Company, and Herzog & Company. Beyond that the records are blank-except to note that the ship’s master had considerable difficulty in recruiting a crew. However, the following year, reports says that Philadelphia exported 239,000 barrels of oil.
(Source and image: AOGHS)

SNC-LAVALIN SELLS RESOURCES OIL & GAS TO ACCELERATE ITS ONGOING TRANSITION

February 11, 2021

Canada’s SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., a fully integrated professional services and project management company, has entered into a binding agreement to...

Read More+
PTTEP REPORTS ITS LARGEST DISCOVERY AT LANG-LEBAH OFFSHORE SARAWAK

February 11, 2021

PTT Exploration and Production Public Company Limited, or PTTEP wishes to announce that PTTEP HK Offshore Limited (Malaysia Branch) or PTTEP HKO, a...

Read More+
QATAR PETROLEUM CONSTRUCTS WORLD’S LARGEST LNG PROJECT EVER

February 11, 2021

Qatar Petroleum took the final investment decision for developing the North Field East Project (NFE), the world’s largest LNG project, which will...

Read More+
EQUINOR SELLS INTERESTS IN NORTH DAKOTA AND MONTANA FOR $900 MILLION

February 11, 2021

Equinor has agreed to divest its interests in the Bakken field in the US states of North Dakota and Montana to Grayson Mill Energy, backed by EnCap...

Read More+
SCHLUMBERGER NEW ENERGY AND LAFARGEHOLCIM TO EXPLORE CCS SOLUTIONS

February 10, 2021

LafargeHolcim and Schlumberger New Energy will explore the development of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) solutions. The two companies will study...

Read More+
PETRONAS AND JERA TO COLLABORATE ON WIDE RANGE OF LOW-CARBON ENERGIES

February 10, 2021

Petronas has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with JERA, the largest power generation company in Japan, that will see both companies collaborate...

Read More+
STENA LINE TO LAUNCH FOSSIL-FREE BATTERY POWERED VESSELS BY 2030

February 10, 2021

Swedish terry company Stena Line plans to start operating two fossil-free battery powered vessels on the route between Gothenburg and Frederikshavn...

Read More+
VACA MUERTA FORMATION NOW PRODUCING AT RECORD LEVELS IN ARGENTINA

February 10, 2021

The oil production decline that the Covid-19 pandemic brought to Argentina’s Vaca Muerta formation now seems like a distant memory. The reserve’s...

Read More+
DENMARK TO CONSTRUCT WORLD’S FIRST WIND ENERGY HUB ON ARTIFICIAL ISLAND

February 10, 2021

Denmark has reached a landmark agreement on the construction of an energy hub in the North Sea. The energy hub will be an artificially constructed...

Read More+
NOBLE CORPORATION COMPLETES RESTRUCTURING AND EMERGES FROM CHAPTER 11

February 09, 2021

Noble Holding Corporation announced today that on February 5, 2021 it successfully completed its financial restructuring and its debtor affiliates...

Read More+
SCHLUMBERGER NEW ENERGY AND PARTNERS ESTABLISH GENVIA GOVERNANCE

February 09, 2021

Schlumberger New Energy, the CEA and partners have announced Florence Lambert as the CEO of the Genvia clean hydrogen production technology venture,...

Read More+
KOZLODUY NPP IN BULGARIA SELECTS WESTINGHOUSE NUCLEAR FUEL

February 09, 2021

Westinghouse Electric Company and Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant signed a VVER-1000 nuclear fuel licensing contract for the Kozloduy power plant in Bulgaria,...

Read More+