Academic journal article The Journal of Southern History

Louisiana Piney Woods Oil Boom. by Jon L. Gibson

Academic journal article The Journal of Southern History

Louisiana Piney Woods Oil Boom. by Jon L. Gibson

Article excerpt

Louisiana Piney Woods Oil Boom. By Jon L. Gibson. (Gretna, La.: Pelican Publishing, 2019.' Pp. 155. $28.95, ISBN 978-1-4556-2455-3.) Louisiana Piney Woods Oil Boom charts the development of two oil fields in LaSalle Parish, Louisiana, the Tullos-Urania field and the Olla field. In order to tell this history Jon L. Gibson relies on the voices of workers long since "gone in the hole" (p. 15). He presents these interviews, conducted in the 1980s and 1990s, as lengthy quotations throughout the text. Since the book consists of thirteen chapters and a preface in under 140 pages, the use of block quotations leaves little room for Gibson to make his own claims, though comparisons of the two fields leads to interesting conclusions. The work of drilling changed between the 1925 discovery of the Tullos-Urania field and the 1940 strike on the Olla field, as steel replaced the wooden derricks and the dangerous steam boilers disappeared. Gibson argues that the persistence or loss of oil towns was related to the type of companies operating in the field, with condensed corporate control in the Olla field leading to more stability. …

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