Transcribed from A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. Chicago: Lewis Publishing Company, copyright 1918


Prairie Oil and Gas Company

THE PRAIRIE OIL AND GAS COMPANY. As one of the largest corporations in Kansas, everyone has more or less knowledge of the Prairie Oil and Gas Company, and repeated reference is made to its activities in these pages. However, some items that might not otherwise be mentioned should be brought together in a paragraph or two.

The company was incorporated and established in December, 1900, with headquarters at Neodesha, Kansas. Since 1905 the home of this corporation has been at Independence, and the people of Independence take great pride in the fact that this corporation has its home in their city. In July, 1916, was completed the Prairie Oil and Gas Building, one of the finest office buildings in the State of Kansas. This is situated on West Myrtle Street between Ninth and Tenth streets.

The present officers of the company are: J. F. O'Neil, president; W. S. Fitzpatrick, vice president; Nelson K. Moody, vice president; J. A. Hollahan, secretary; and A. T. Patterson, treasurer.

All the organization and equipment of the Prairie Oil and Gas Company are for the purpose of producing and marketing crude oil. Its operations cover the fields in Kansas and Oklahoma excepting the Healdton oil fields. The company operates no refineries, and its essential business is to deliver the crude oil to these refineries.

When it was incorporated in 1900 the company had a capital of $3,000,000. Its present capital is $18,000,000.

The company developed a system of pipe lines from the Mid-Continent fields to a point near Chicago in the State of Indiana, capable of transporting its products for a distance of more than a 1,000 miles. The capacity of that pipe line is approximately 65,000 barrels a day, with a branch line to Sugar Creek with capacity of from 18,000 to 20,000 barrels per day, and another branch line to Wood River near Alton, Illinois, of 30,000 barrels a day. These lines were owned and operated by the Prairie Oil and Gas Company for the transportation of its own oil until August, 1914. At that time by law the pipe lines became common carriers, but were continued under the operation of the Prairie Oil and Gas Company until February 1, 1915. At that date there was organized a corporation under the laws of Kansas, with home offices at Independence, and with capital of $27,000,000, The Prairie Pipe Line Company. The Prairie Oil and Gas Company then sold all its pipe lines and transportation facilities and franchises to the new corporation. The officers of the Pipe Line Company are: W. F. Gates, president; C. H. Kountz, vice president; F. M. Wilhelm, secretary; and R. G. Harris, treasurer. This company has leased offices in the west wing of the new Prairie Oil and Gas Building.


Transcribed from volume 4, pages 1844-1845 of A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans, written and compiled by William E. Connelley, Secretary of the Kansas State Historical Society, Topeka. Chicago: Lewis Publishing Company, copyright 1918; originally transcribed 1998, modified 2003 by Carolyn Ward.

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