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Drill: The U.S. Oil Industry Turns 150

Before 1859, America had no oil business. August 28 marks the 150th anniversary of its first commercial well. Today, the U.S. is the world's third-biggest oil producer and largest consumer. Join us for a tour of this gas-guzzling nation.

Drill: The U.S. Oil Industry Turns 150

Infographic: Drill: The U.S. Oil Industry  Popup-Icon

Texas, America's top producer, is home to 24% of the country's oil reserves. One million barrels are produced each day in the Lone Star State.

Alaska's Prudhoe Bay, the largest field in North America, pumps 475,000 barrels daily. But Alaska's output has dropped 66% from its 1988 peak of 2 million barrels a day.

The Rocky Mountain region has the highest per-capita oil consumption in the U.S., thanks largely to long-distance commutes in the region.

In 1907, John McLean, of Standard Oil, opened the world's first gasoline service station at the corner of Holgate Street and Western Avenue in Seattle. He built the first pump using a garden hose.

Oil production in North Dakota jumped 17% in 2007, more than any other state.

Near Titusville, Pennsylvania, Edwin Drake struck black gold in 1859 with a 70-foot well owned by Seneca Oil. This maiden well yielded 25 barrels a day.

Four hundred fourteen million barrels of crude oil are pumped each year from the Gulf of Mexico, the heart of the U.S. petroleum industry.

A version of this article appeared in the July/August 2009 issue of Fast Company magazine.