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Investors well USA #1 in middle of Lake Sakakawea aerial photograph, N.D.
Investors well USA #1 in middle of Lake Sakakawea aerial photograph, N.D.
TitleInvestors well USA #1 in middle of Lake Sakakawea aerial photograph, N.D.
Date of Original195-
CreatorShemorry, Bill, 1914-2004
Creator RolePhotographer
DescriptionAn oddity in the petroleum industry of North Dakota was this Madison producer pictured above which in 1958 was the only marine and offshore drilling operation for thousands of miles.
Owned at that time by Investors Oil Inc., the well is located in Section 58-154n-94w.
During the summertime, personnel of Investors Oil take the company cabin cruiser, sail down Beaver Creek to the Missouri River, then navigate a devious channel between trees and other obstructions to the mound were they open valves that alllow the oil to flow to a tank battery on higher ground.

The mound had changed in appeaance quite a bit by 1964 when storms and strong wave action had washed away the protective rock and travel island, necessitating the addition of an enclosure made of piling, rock and cement.
General SubjectOil
Business & Industry
Subject (LCTGM)Oil well drilling rigs
Oil wells
Petroleum industry
Lakes
Waterfronts
Mounds (Landforms)
Organization NameInvestors Oil, Inc. (North Dakota)
LocationLake Sakakawea (N.D.)
Decade1950-1959
Item Number1-28-47-3
Negative Number1-28-47-3
Format of OriginalFilm negatives
Dimensions of Original4 x 6 in.
Publisher of OriginalShemorry, William E. (Bill)
Place of PublicationMud, Sweat and Oil: The Early Days of the Williston Basin
Transcription"Mound pix - well in middle of L. Sakakawea Investors Inc 11-58 USA#1 Pic for Dois Dallas"--Handwritten on envelope containing negatives
NotesTitle created by staff.
Biography/HistoryWilliam E. "Bill" Shemorry was a native of Williston, N.D. who began work in the newspaper industry as a newsboy selling the Williston Herald and the Williams County Farmers Press. In 1953, he started to publish the Williston Plains Reporter, which he operated for 25 years before selling to the Williston Herald. Shemorry then began to concentrate on his own writing and photography. In addition to writing many books on the history of Williams County, he also collected photographs of early North Dakota photographers. Shemorry was an active member of the Williston Fire Department, was Civil Defense Chief of Williams County for three years in the 1950's, and was a combat photographer in World War II. Shemorry's photograph of the discovery of oil in North Dakota on April 4, 1951 at the Clarence Iverson No. 1 is one of the most famous oil photographs ever taken, and was published in many national publications.
Bibliographic ReferenceThis photograph was published in Mud, Sweat and Oil: The Early Days of the Williston Basin along with the description caption, on page 121.
Repository InstitutionState Historical Society of North Dakota
Repository CollectionWilliam E. (Bill) Shemorry Photograph Collection Mss 10958
Credit LineState Historical Society of North Dakota, William E. (Bill) Shemorry Photograph Collection (1-28-47-3)
Rights ManagementPermission to reproduce this image must be requested from the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Ordering InformationTo order a reproduction, inquire about the collection, or provide information about an image, please email Emily E. Schultz at eschultz@nd.gov
Digital IDws128473
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