Discovery Well in the Wasson Field

Discovery Well in the Wasson Field (HM1E7Z)

Location: Plains, TX 79355 Yoakum County
Country: United States of America

N 33° 2.954', W 102° 49.122'

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L.P. and Ruth Bennett moved to Yoakum County in 1916 to take over the ranching operation they had inherited from Ruth's father Dr. J.R. Smith of Munday. In 1927 they leased part of the ranch to the Texas Pacific Coal and Oil Company for the drilling of exploratory oil wells.

By the mid-1930s the Bennett's cattle business was declining as a result of the economic depression and a severe area drought. They were in danger of losing their property through foreclosure when oil was discovered on the ranch. The find was made on October 10, 1935 at the Ruth Bennett No. 1-678 (6 mi. NE), a well supervised by Fort Worth wildcatter Red Davidson and crews of the Honolulu Oil Company. With the discovery, the Bennetts were able to pay all claims against their land.

Increased drilling activity in the area created a "boom town" atmosphere and led to the founding of Denver City (6 mi. S) in 1939. Petroleum remains the major industry in Yoakum County, a national leader in the production of crude oil.

In 1964 Gene H. Bennett, the youngest son of L.P. and Ruth Bennett, donated this portion of the Bennett Ranch to the county for use as a park.
HM NumberHM1E7Z
Marker Number1229
Year Placed1981
Placed ByTexas Historical Commission
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, October 3rd, 2014 at 11:30pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)13S E 703674 N 3658859
Decimal Degrees33.04923333, -102.81870000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 33° 2.954', W 102° 49.122'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds33° 2' 57.24" N, 102° 49' 7.32" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)806
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 510 Ranch Rd 213, Plains TX 79355, US
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