Yesterday in ND oil history, April 4, 1951, 65 years ago: North Dakota's discovery well, Amerada Clarence Iverson #1 began flowing oil.
The famous reflection-pool picture of the rig and gas flare was taken by Bill Shemorry.
Bill took the famous picture late on the night of the 4th or early on the 5th. He then drove to Minot to have a photo-plate engraved which he brought back to Williston in time to make his newspaper deadline.I met Bill Shemorry on two or three occasions while attending Williston High School. I don't think I have ever met anyone who worked so many hours. He was everywhere, all the time, documenting the history of western North Dakota.
His collection is here.
I've posted a few notes about the Clarence Iverson #1 well (#25 - Beaver Lodge-Devonian Unit G-307) over the years. Here are a couple of links:
- Perhaps one of the most famous oil photographs ever taken; taken by Bill Shemorry.
- Another Bill Shemorry photograph of the well; from an airplane.
- Crowd scene at the Clarence Iverson #1 well.
Since our letter to your office of 4-2-51, we have set oil and gas separator between well and test tank. The well flowed 307 bbl oil and 25 bbl mud & water in 17 hours, ending at 6:00 a.m. 4-5-51. Well was flowing through 3/4" adjustable choke with the pressure of 315# and casing pressure of 1100# at 6:00 am. Well flowed 159 bbls oil through 3/4" adjustable choice from 6:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. 4-5-51 at which time it was shut in for tank room. The tubing pressure was 350# and casing pressure was 1000# when oil well was shut in. The well had 3300# Tbg pressure and 3400# casing pressure at 6:00 a.m. 4-8-51 whnen we started to kill the well.