The back breaking labor on oil fields across the U.S. is the subject of a collection of photographs portraying the burgeoning petroleum industry at the turn of the century.
The black and white pictures showcase laborers working under the scorching sun, dramatic oil well fires and candid shots of everyday life on the field.
The oil gush meant big money for some of America's most well-known industrialist, making millions for the likes of John D. Rockefeller, George and John Paul Getty, William Larimer Mellon, Sr. and Joseph S. Cullinan.
The boom of the U.S. petroleum industry began in the early 19th century, starting in the East and slowly moving to the Gulf Coast and Mid-continent.
For much of the 20th century, the U.S. was the largest oil producing country in the world. It is now the 3rd largest, behind Saudi Arabia and Russia.
OIL EXPLORATION ACROSS THE U.S.
Teamwork: A crew working at the Santa Fe Springs oil field in California
Loading a dynamite charge onto cart to fight the Getty oil well fire, 1928
Wells of the Home Oil Company in California
Fire at an oil field in Santa Fe Springs, California
Flames engulf the Wardman Wells in 1929
Service hoist in use for oil drilling
Workers pack onto a Rio automobile as they prepare for work
Five members of an oil drilling crew
Area of early oil exploration in Monterey Park, California
Massive flames at the General Petroleum Corporation's stored oil
Mohawk Petroleum Fire with billowing smoke, wooden oil derricks
Inspection of the Naval Oil Reserves
Fires in Santa Fe Springs