Kingman County, KS.

 History  of  Skellyville


 
      From 1934 to 1958 an area two miles northwest of Cunningham was known as Skellyville. Oil and gas wells were discovered on "Poverty Ridge" in 1931. Skelly Oil Company erected a gasoline plant the latter part of 1933. Actual processing operations began in April 1934. This was during the Depression and a lifesaver for the Cunningham community.
      Offices for the production and pipeline departments of Skelly Oil were also a part of the area. During the construction period, a restaurant flourished in the settlement. About thirty men were employed at the plant during peak operation.
      Over twenty homes were located in Skellyville. Some were company owned and others were owned privately. Included in the area was the large farm home of Frank Miles. Skellyville was built on land leased from him.
      In May 1958, the gasoline plant closed. Depletion of the gas supply in the wells caused the closing. Four men, Ray Amick, Guy Remy, Jake Kees, and Glen Pearson worked during the full time the plant was in operation. After the closing, Ray Amick remained as sole employee for a short time, as security guard. The homes were removed and the plant dismantled.
      The production department is still in operation This department takes care of the company owned oil wells. Thirty were employed by this department; now there are only thirteen. An office is maintained in the Skellyville area, but it is no longer Skelly, Getty Oil Co. bought Skelly Oil Company in 1977. All former Skelly employees are now Getty employees. Jim Parkhurst heads the Getty production department in the area.
      The third department of the operation, the pipe-line department, is still operating on a limited basis. Ivan Cain is in charge. The department is operated from the refinery in El Dorado.
      The name of Skelly Oil Co. is nearly a thing of the past. When Getty Oil took over, gradually the name of each operation was changed. Now Texaco Oil is in the process of purchasing Getty Oil and all will change again. The name Skelly still exists in the name of Skellytown, Texas, and the Skelly Building in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Adapted from:
Kingman County, Kansas, And Its People.
(Kingman: Kingman County Historical Society. 1984)
Used by permission
 
September 1, 2001 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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