Crown News & Announcements

A crown is the symbol of a ruler. It signifies not only leadership and prosperity, but integrity and vision. Our crown signifies our conduct, our ideals, and our ambition.

July 11, 2008 – World Oil Price hits Historic High

The price of oil reached a record high of $147.27 a barrel before dropping back to $145.08. Prices on the New York Mercantile Exchange had peaked at $145.29 a barrel eight days earlier. As supply fears subsided, oil prices fell below $37 a barrel by January 2009.

 

Shamrock JV #2 - Completion Flyover

Shamrock JV #2 - Drone Drilling Rig Flyover

April 2021 - Shamrock JV #2 - Location Flyover

January 2021 - Cleveland JV #30 Drone Drilling Rig Video

 

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January 12, 1926 – Texans patent Ram-Type Blowout Preventer

Seeking to end dangerous and wasteful oil gushers, James Abercrombie and Harry Cameron received a patent for a hydraulic ram-type blowout preventer. Petroleum companies embraced the new technology, which the inventors improved in the 1930s. Their concept used rams — hydrostatic pistons — to close on the drill stem and form a seal against the well pressure. Abercrombie had taken his idea for the ram-type preventer to Cameron’s machine shop in Humble, Texas, where the two men sketched out details on the sawdust floor.

December 17, 1884 –  Fighting Oilfield Fires with Cannons

“Oil fires, like battles, are fought by artillery” proclaimed an article in The Tech, a student newspaper of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “A Thunder-Storm in the Oil Country” featured the reporter’s firsthand account of the problem of lightning strikes in America’s oilfields.

The MIT article not only reported on the fiery results of a lightning strike, but also the practice of using Civil War cannons to fight such conflagrations. Operators learned that shooting cannon balls into the base of burning tanks allowed oil to drain safely into a holding pit until the fire died out. “Small cannons throwing a three-inch solid shot are kept at various stations throughout the region for this purpose,” the article noted.

November 20, 1930 – Oil Booms help Hilton expand in Texas

After buying his first motel in the booming oil town of Cisco, Texas, Conrad Hilton opened a high-rise hotel in El Paso. While visiting Cisco in 1919, Hilton had witnessed roughnecks from the Ranger oilfield waiting for rooms. Hilton’s first hotel, the Mobley, had 40 rooms he rented for eight-hour periods to coincide with workers’ shifts. Thanks to oil booms, Hilton was firmly established in the Texas hotel business. His El Paso Hilton (now the Plaza Hotel) was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

November 13, 1925 – New Oil Discovery at Spindletop, Texas

The Yount-Lee Oil Company started a second major drilling boom at Spindletop, Texas, when the McFaddin No. 2 well began producing 5,000 barrels of oil a day. The well was completed just south of the famous “Lucas Gusher” of 1901. Miles Yount, who had founded his exploration company in 1914, believed Spindletop Hill held more oil – if drilled deeper on its flanks. His well reached a depth of 2,500 feet (more than twice that of the 1901 well) and proved him right. That evening a Beaumont radio station announced the discovery, launching another Texas oil boom.

November 8, 1880 – Death of Edwin L. Drake, Father of U.S. Petroleum Industry

Edwin Laurentine Drake, the former railroad conductor who drilled America’s first commercial oil well, died in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, at the age of 61. Drake drilled just three wells – but his first – which produced oil  on August 27, 1859 – launched the U.S. petroleum industry.

Although his discovery brought prosperity to many, by 1863 Drake had lost all his money in speculative ventures. A decade later he was so ill and destitute the Pennsylvania legislature voted him a $1,500 pension in recognition of his historic contribution.

After America’s first independent oil producer died in 1880 in relative obscurity, Standard Oil executive Henry Rogers anonymously commissioned a monument for Drake (Rogers also was the financial savior of Mark Twain). Drake was re-interred in 1902 in Woodlawn Cemetery at Titusville. It was long overdue recognition in the valley where he launched the U.S. oil industry.

October 30, 1894 – “Golden Rule” Jones patents a Better Sucker Rod

Samuel Jones patented a sucker rod design for his Acme Sucker Rod Company, which he had founded in 1892 in Toledo, Ohio. With his “Coupling for Pipes or Rods,” Jones applied his oilfield experience in mechanics to solve the frequent and time-consuming problem of broken sucker rods. His sucker rod would soon make him a millionaire.

Jones had worked in Pennsylvania’s oil region as a potboiler, pumper, tool dresser, blacksmith, and pipe layer. He became known as “Golden Rule” Jones of Ohio by creating a better workplace for employees at his factory, where he shortened the work day and started a revenue-sharing program for his workers. In 1887, Jones ran for Toledo mayor as a progressive Republican and was elected. He was reelected three times and served until dying on the job in 1904.

October 23, 1948 – “Smart Pig” advances Pipeline Inspection

Northern Natural Gas Company recorded the first use of an X-ray machine for internal testing of petroleum pipeline welds. The company examined a 20-inch diameter pipe north of its Clifton, Kansas, compressor station. The device – today known as a “smart pig” – traveled up to 1,800 feet inside the pipe, imaging each weld.

As early as 1926, U.S. Navy researchers had investigated the use of gamma-ray radiation to detect flaws in welded steel. In 1944, Cormack Boucher patented a “radiographic apparatus” suitable for large pipelines. Modern inspection tools employ magnetic particle, ultrasonic, eddy current, and other methods to verify pipeline and weld integrity.

October 16, 1931 – Natural Gas Pipeline sets Record

America’s first long-distance, high-pressure natural gas pipeline went into service during the Great Depression; it linked the prolific Texas Panhandle gas fields to consumers in Chicago.  A 1931 natural gas pipeline extended 980 miles from North Texas to Illinois.  A.O. Smith Corporation had developed the technology of thin-walled pipe and Continental Construction Corporation built the 980-mile bolted flange pipeline for the Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America (NGPL). The $75 million high-tech project consumed 209,000 tons of A.O. Smith’s specially fabricated 24-inch wide steel pipe (the pipe filled 6,500 freight cars) and required 2,600 separate right-of-way leases.

October 2020 - Shamrock JV #1 Drilling Rig Video

Shamrock JV #1 – Drilling Rig Video

October 7, 1859 – First American Oil Well Ignites in Flames

The wooden derrick and engine house of the first U.S. commercial oil well erupted in flames, perhaps America’s first oil well fire. The well beside Oil Creek at Titusville, Pennsylvania, had been completed the previous August by Edwin L Drake for George Bissell and the Seneca Oil Company of New Haven, Connecticut. Working with driller William “Uncle Billy” Smith, Drake had used steam-powered cable-tool technology to find oil.
“The first oil well fire was started by ‘Uncle Billy,’ who went to inspect the oil in the vat with an open lamp, setting the gases alight,” notes historian Urja Davin. “It burned the derrick, all the stored oil, and the driller’s home.” Drake would quickly rebuild at his already famous well site.

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