Abstract

A little more than 75 years ago, one of the very early seismic crews worked its way through a part of northeast Texas and came up empty-handed as far as providing a viable drilling prospect. That crew missed finding the largest oil field ever found in the lower 48—the seven-billion-barrel East Texas Field. Or so the lore goes. I don't know exactly when or where I heard this story, but I believe it was when I was growing up in the 1950s in east Texas. I probably overheard it at one of the company barbecues as the men stood around tin washtubs chock full of ice and longneck beer bottles, bantering back and forth about such things. No asset team, this group—they were firmly in their company silos—geologists, geophysicists, drillers, etc., and proud of that fact. It seems likely that some sort of seismic crew operated in the area prior to Dad Joiner's Daisy Bradford #3 coming in on 3 October 1930 (Figure 1)—particularly in light of Michael T. Halbouty's statement in the keynote address at the Second Wallace E. Pratt Memorial Conference, January, 2000, when he said “…prior to its discovery, every major company and many independent companies, with their expertise and seismic black boxes ran their equipment repeatedly over the area and agreed that it did not have the parameters for the accumulation of oil.”

You do not currently have access to this article.