Kevin-Sunburst OIL FIELD Newspaper
THE KEVIN COURIER.
KEVIN, Toole County, Mont., Wednesday, July 19, 1922
$2.50 per Year
Volume 1, Number 12
KEVIN'S ORIGINAL LEASE MAN
MADE RICH BY INVESTMENTS
RETIRES TO SOUTHERN HOME
Although the Kevin-Sunburst field
is only a little over three months old
since it was proven that oil was under
the ground, hundreds of men have
been already made comfortable well
to-do who were "broke," many have
been made wealthy and several rich.
Among the latter is E. L. McWhorter.
Last Tuesday, a check, not the first
that he has received nor the last he
will get, for $20,000.00 was deposited
to his credit in a Great Falls bank for
the lease on 80 acres of ground, the
well known capitalists who recently
entered the oil game. The lease pur
chased covered the northeast of the
northeast, section 34, and the north
west of the northwest of 35, township
SG, range 2 west, and the price figures
at $250 per acre.
Mr. McWhorter came to Montana
from Birmingham, Alabama, about a
year ago and while not knowing any
thing about the oil game he had faith
in the men who were then pioneering
here and took leases and invested a
small fortune in royalties, getting
them at that time at a low figure.
Since the strike in March he has done
nothing else but make out assign
ments and deeds and keep tab on his
bank account which recently grew to
such proportions that he concluded to
take a rest, and Saturday, he and his
family left for their old home in Ala
bama. He still retains much royalty
and some very choice acreage, much
than he has sold, and no doubt
will be back at intervals to watch the
progrès of the field and his invest
Other deals Mr. McWhorter closed
before leaving included the sale of 2%
per cent royalty to Mrs. N. G. Bullard
of Great Falls in 80 acres in 32-36-2
west, the price being $20 per acre.
The lease of 120 acres in 32-36-2
west to William G. Bridewell of Great
Falls at $150 per acre.
Homestake Exploration company in
13-35-2 west, at a price of $150 per
acre, it is said.
Mr. McWhorter purchased from the
of 40 acres to the
Homestake company 2% per cent roy
alty in 120 acres in this section 13.
Mrs. William J. O'Haire of Sun
week sold to W. G. Bride
well of Great Falls one-fourth of one
per cent in 320 acres, 4-35-2 west.
Speaking of the success of Mr. Mc
Whorter, a daily newspaper of Great
Falls, where the McWhorter
to Kevin Holdings
Oklahoma Concern Now Drilling Two
Holes in East Part of Field Buys
Half Section More Near Kevin.
Another block of acreage near Ke
vin has been taken by an active drill
ing company and another well is to be
started before fall. The land is the
half of southwest quarter, the south
east quarter, and the south half of the
northeast quarter of section 24, 35-2
west, 320 acres and has been leased
by the Gladys-Belle Oil company from
H. E. Fry berger, a Minneapolis at
The consideration has not
been made public but it is known that
asking a good
Mr. Fryfoerger was
price. The Gladys-Belle company has
nly recently entered the Kevin-Sun
burst field, first taking a hold of a
big block of acreage east of the Sweet
Grass hills where they have a hole
down nearing the 2,000 feet level and
where oil was hit in a well drilled
there seme years ago.
second producer was brought in here,
the company m*de a deal with W. M.
Fulton on the permit he was drilling
on in 1-34-2 west and are now making
a rapid hole there. They took over 80
acres in 18-35-2 west from the Three
In One Oil Syndicate and have spud
ded in on that. Last week they took
an additional forty in that vicinity
and now with the Fryberger acreage
and no doubt other acreage purchases
yet made public, they are to bo
real factors in the development of the
local field as well as the pioneers
what many believe to be a good field
in the Sweet Grass hills.
The editor of The Courier and Thos
Amerman were at Sunburst Friday
have made their home recently, has
this to say:
"After having acquired enough of
worldly goods to keep the wolf from
the door of his home and from the
homes of his children and perhaps his
children's children, E. L. McWhorter,
manager of the Kevin-Sunburst Real
ty company, is leaving on Saturday
for his old home, in Birmingham, Ala
bama, perhaps to return, perhaps to
"McWhorter on March 1, 1922,
tually broke. Today he leaves be
hind the brokerage business and the
title, but takes with him upwards of
$100,000 in cold cash, representing
about half of his winnings, at present
prices, in the Kevin-Sunburst oil field.
Mr. McWhorter is in Great Falls
today dosing up his affairs. His fath
er, J. W. McWhorter, who is also an
investor in northern Montana oil, has
been in the field for the past few
weeks, and he is taking his son back
to the old home town with him when
he returns on Saturday.
"Betting everything he had,
Whorter plunged in royalties and
leases in the Kevin field in the fall of
"He has closed a number of other
deals, retaining about half of his
lease and royalty holdings. He has
enough of either leases or royalties to
give him a comfortable income and he
has scattered his holdings over the
field in such a way that he cannot
lose, "no matter how the cat jumps."
Mr. McWhorter is one of the first of
the new batch of Montana oil million
He is well satisfied with his
holdings, he says, and he now intends
to keep what he has and "let so—eone
else make some money in the field".
Plucky Men Gamble
The recent heavy rains not only
filled all the old reservoirs and
sloughs but stocked up with the
fluid so essential to drilling
operations many reservoirs built by
local men and oil companies plucky
enough to take the generally consid
ered poor chance of heavy rains this
late in the season. Among these were
William Seabrook, who hired a damn
thrown up on 19 and 30-35-2W, and he
together with B. C. Hurd, control the
from which the
piping water about a mile to its drill
ing operations in the east half of the
southeast quarter of 18-35-2W.
Art Louis, field manager
company by that name, which is drill
ing the well next expected in on 14-35
SW, just north of Kevin, being a local
ident and knowing the scarcity of
summer and fall
water during the
months here, built a dam and reser
voir on land near operations and the
recent rain has repaid his foresight.
The big reservoir back of the Camp
bell discovery well has been filled,
which will furnish a reserve for much
drilling in that vicinity. The Rainbow
company is using water from this as
well as for the Campbell operations.
L. W. Baker, local agent for Artlee
Beardslee, the Great Falls
sheepman who has such large lease
holdings here, has seen to it that a
number of substantial dams were built
at strategetic points in the field, most
of these being completed before the
All of which puts the field in a very
favorable position, as water is gener
ally scarce in most oil fields, many
places in Texas it cost from $15 to
$50 per day per well or drilling and
until water wells were brought in
from the deep sands of Cat Creek,
water commanded a price of one dol
lar a barrel in the field.
Kevin Blacksmith Shop
L. R. Pyke has opened his new
blacksmith shop on First avenue
south, and is now prepared to handle
all sorts of acetylene welding, boiler
work and general blacksmithing. Mr.
Pyke has a successful shop in Havre,
and seeing the great need of a shop
in Kevin, he is determined to put in
a first-class shop here.
The Adams wholesale oil station
has been completed and doing busi
Site in Kevin Sector
Big Company Which Has Done Much
to Develop Cat Creek and Recently
Brought in Gushers There, Ships
After much preliminary work and
scouting in Toole county, extending
over a long period, The Courier hears
that the Mid-Northern has decided to
put down a well in the Kevin section
of the field and a rig for this opera
tion is said to have already been ship
ped. The site for the Mid-Northem's
first well is said to be on an 80-acre |
tract recently obtained by that com
pany in 9-35-2W.
Guy Craig, superintendent of the
company and who has had charge of
the extensive and successful onera
tions in Cat Creek where but recently
gushers have been added to the com
pany's many producers, was at Kevin
Wednesday, making final arrange
ments, it is understood, for the drill
ing of the first hole. Township 35,
range 2 west, is getting more play,
outside of the territory of the two
producers, than any other sector, a
new dite being chosen in that town
ship almost daily.
The Mid-Northern has a large block
in the northern part of Toole county,
couth and west of Sweet Gra.
was leased last year and it is under
stood that its holdings have been
enlarged this season in that section,
and its entry in the Kevin sector is
the first known of the company's in
tention to operate in this pan.
Shaffer Will Drill
West of Ohio Well
Another Well Known Oklahoma Oil
Man Has Secured Acreage in Kevin
Sunburst and Rig Otrdered for
Following a visitation to the field
on Wednesday by J. K. D. Shaffer,
president of the Shaffer Oil company,
and W. C. Wright, geologist, it be
came known in Kevin that Mr. Shaf
fer has secured 80 acres in 33-36-2W
and that a well would be immediately
started. It is understood that a rig
has been ordered through the local
lumber company's office. While the
exact location of the site was not an
nounced, the selection was made while
these gentlemen were in the field. It
has also been rumored that this well
will immediately sunk to consider
able depth unless an extra heavy flow
of oil is found sooner, as a thorough
test of all sands is desired.
Although Mr. Shaffer has retained
his interests in Shaffer Oil, since his
brother, C. B. Shaffer retired from
the organization last fall, he is acting
independently in the local fields.
Gordon Campbell-Kevin Syndicate
No. 1, NE NE 16-35-3W.
Sunburst Oil & Gas company No. 1,
SE SW 34-36-2W.
Holding and Royalty, SE NE 21
Sunburst Ohio No. 1, NE NW 3
Aloe Oil Syndicate No. 1, SE NW
Rainbow No. 1 NW SE 9-35-3W.
Orchard No. 1, SE SE 9-35-3W.
Coe No. 1, SW SW 4-36-2W.
Gladys Belle, NE NE 19-37-4 east.
A. E. Louis Corporation, NE SE
Homestake No. 1, NE NW 3-35-2W.
Three-In-One Oil Syndicate No. 1,
SW SW 8-35-1W.
Troy-Sweet Grass Oil company No.
1, NE NW 28-34-IW.
Sunburst Oil & Gas company No. 2,
NE SE 5-35-2W.
California company No. 1, SE SE
10-35-3W. Shut down, 500.
Gladys-Belle-Fulton No. 1, NE NE
Gladys-Belle-Three-In-One No. 2,
NE SE 18-35-2W.
Gordon Campbell-Kevin Syndicate
No. 2, SW SW 10-35-3W.
Ohio-Reibe No. 1, NW NE 3-35
Widely Advertised Theory Put
Out by Promotion Co. Shattered
by Startling Statements of Hager
Suit For Oil Land
Shelby, July 15.—Action has been
brought in Toole county by J. C.
Smith and Leigh Wade to enforce
specific performance of control of
purchase and sale of the S% SW J 4,
S>VV.SE% of section 30, NW%NW%
Srt NW%, N 1-2 SW% of section 31,
township 36, north, range 2 west, con
tabling 320 acres,
The complaint alleges that the
plaintiffs and the defendant, Irvine
S. Sprecher, entered into a contract
on June 17, 1922, for the purchase
and sale of this property at $27.50
per acre. The purchase included 12%
per cent royalty retained by the de
fendant under a lease which he made
to Gordon Campbell some time ago.
The complaint also alleges that the
plaintiffs made a deposit cf $500, the
balance to be pa : d within 30 days and
that the plaintiffs have complied with
all of the terms of the agreement on
their part to Be performed, but that
the defendant has failed and refused
to comply with his part of the agree
The plaintiffs further seek to re
cover the sum of $8,000, which they
claim as damages alleged to have
peen sustained by them in the loss of
profits due to the failure of the de
fendant to complete the transaction
between him and the plaintiffs.
Standard Co. Buys
Land East of Aloe
The California company has pur
chased from Robert J. Holland all 51
section 6, township 33, range 1 west,
paying $12,800 for 640 acres.
tv This is at the rate of $20 an acre
[and sets a new price scale on acreage
in the southern part of the field. This
acreage is four miles east of the sta
tion of Aloe and is eight miles south
and east of Kevin.
This purchase is taken to indicate
growing faith of the California com
pany in the south slope of the Gas
Ridge anticline. The California com
pany has taken "protection" acreage
in all parts of the field. Recently the
California company spotted a well in
the SE% SW% of section 13-34-2
west, which would seem to give cred
ence to the theory that the Troy
Sweet Grass diamond drill test does
not fully establish that there is no oil
in that section,
The heavy rain Saturday afternoon
and night has furnished additional
moisture for the growing crops and
range and ranchers are, as a conse
quence, in a happy frame of mind.
T. S. Hogan,22-35- 2W.
Ohio-O'Hanna No. 1, section 26-36
Ohio-Claire Stevenson No. 1, section
Ohio-Swayze No. 1, section 34-36-2
Ohio-Sanden No. 1, section 1-35-2
Ohio-Davey No. 1, section 34-36-2
Ohio-Davey No. 2, section 3
Rice No. 1, NW NW 8-35-2W.
Homestake No. 2, 26-35-2W.
Black Magic Oil company, SW SE
O'Neil & Catlett, NE 15-35-3W.
Rainbow No. 2, NW NW 15-35-3W.
Sweet Grass Oil and Land No. 1,
SW SW 6-35-1W.
Producers Oil & Gas, SW SW 21
Sunburst-Ohio No. 2 SW SE 34-36
Potlatch No. 1, SE SW 27-34-lW.
Big West No. 1,NW NW 6-34-1W.
California Co., SE SE 13-34-2W.
Potlatch No. 2, NW SW 28-34-lW.
Apex No. 1 SW SE 3-35-3W.
Sunburst O. &. L. Co., 10-34-2W.
Dawson-Merkle No. 1, NW% NE14
In flat contradiction of the widely
advertised theory, as shown by con
tour maps prepared by geologists for
the Sunburst Oil & Gas Co. and circu
lated by the thousands, comes the
statement from iDorsey Hager, Cali
fornia geologist and said to be an au
thority on such matters and who is
now identified with the same com
pany, that "the Sunburst well is lo
cated WELL DOWN THE FLANK
OF A GIANT STP.L HURE." The
statement is made in an article by
Mr. Hiaei published
pa * e s and is his fir?', public minted
utterat.ee regarding the ioca; fhld. No
given as to the exact location of the
structure, and local oil men, many of
whom have been working on a 'hunch'
or upon the popular conception of the
structure as advertised by the promo
tion company, are now busy revising
their ideas in the light of the Hager
statement, and it may be possible that
many of those will come to Gordon
Campbell's conclusions regarding the
Following is important excerpts
from Mr. Hager's aiticle, portions re
ferring to the history of the company
with which he is now identified and
commending its officers being omit
"The recent discovery of oil in the
Sunburst well in section 34, township
36 north, range 2 west, Toole county,
Montana, has attracted a great deal
of interest to that area. The Sunburst
well is the second producer in the dis
trict, the first well being the Gordon
Campbell well, located four miles
northwest from the town of Kevin
and seven miles southwest from Sun
burst well, in section 16, township 35
Lethbridge, July 13.—Funds are not
lacking for the development on the
Canadian oil fields, two companies
having just announced to sink wells
near Courts and on the old govern
ment quarantine station, north and
east of the Sunburst well. These com
panies are the Coutts-Sweet Oils,
Limited, and the Baalim Lethbridge
The former is headed by A. J. Mc
Lean, former minister of public .v>.*ks
for Alberta, and a wealthy stockman,
and associated with him are C. K.
Mitchell, former provincial treasurer
of Alberta; W. Livingstone, Calgwy
oil magnate; A. L. Wood, financier of
Taber, and other Calgary, Winnipeg
and Lethbridge business men. They
are now moving a rig from the Oko
toks field to a location just north of
the border and will spud in within the
next two weeks.
Raising $15,000 in a few hours, and
now over the top in their initial ob
jective of $25,000, the Baalim Leth
bridge syndicate, a local pool headed
by A. G. Baa'im, of the Baalim Motor
company and the Western I)isco\ cr
ies, Limited, are negotiating with
drillers to sink a test well in section
12-1-15, also on the quarantine sta
tion. This group of Lethbridge men
will spud in without delay, as govern
ment regulations make it imperative
that development must begin on this
acreage before August 1 or the leases
will be subject to cancellation.
In the Pawoki lake country on the
Canadian side just north of the Sweet
Grass Hills the Thompson Oil com
pany of New York, is pounding away,
having spudded in over ten days ago,
Just north of this outfit is the Dream
field Oil company's acreage and rig,
which after a long cessation, may be
gin operations soon.
Better Service for Kevin
The enormous increase in the tele
graphic business at the local station
and also at other points adjacent to
the oil field has caused the Western
Union Telegraph company to plan ad
U. G. Life, district manager of the
company, recently made an inspection
of the lines from Shelby to Sweet
Grass and promises improved service.
Owing to the lack of telephone con
nections at Sunburst and other in
conveniences caused by round-about
service, much business is given the
telegraph company that would other
wise go over the telephone.
for these stations.
north, range 3 west. Both wells were
promoted by L. C. Stevenson of Great
No. 1 is good for 200 to 250 barrels,
36 gravity oil, depth at 1,550 feet, the
thickness of the sand 28 feet. The oil
was found in a sand of the Kootenai
The Sunburst well is located
The Sunburst well.
well down the flank of a giant stnic
The discovery well was located by
Mr. Gordon Campbell in 1921, and
was completed in March, 1922. These
two wells open what seems to be one
of the largest producing areas in the
United States if not in the world, for
a single pool.
Gathering Area Is Vast
"Geological conditions are unusual
here. The Sweet Grass Arch is a.
great structural feature, some 300
miles long and 150 miles wide. A
cross-fold cuts this great arch in the
neighborhood of Sunburst and Kevin
and-fonns a reservoir to which the
oil drains from all sides. This cross
fold has a south dip of 30 miles, a
west dip of 50 miles, an east dip of
20 miles and a north dip of 150 miles,
which gives a tremendous drainage
area that is not paralleled within the
borders of the United States. The area
which seems likely to develop as an
oil field is roughly 12 miles square,
and roughly comprises about four
townships. The great size of the fold
was what discouraged many geolo
gists from recommending tests of this
dome as it was their belief that there
could not be enough oil to fill such a
vast reservoir. Large wells are not
looked for although they may come.
Operating Cost Low
"Operating conditions are cheap as
holes can be completed for from nine
to ten thousand dollars, in from two
to three weeks time. Portable drilling
machines are best fitted for work
here. There are few troubles in drill
ing, as the Colorado shale, which most
of the drilling has encountered, stands
up very well. It is interesting to note
that these wells start in Colorado
shale, in which some of the best fields
of Wyoming are found. However, the
Colorado shale has not produced oil in
commercial quantities in Montana, ex
cept in Elk Basin, on the line between
Montana and Wyoming.
Foresees Other Pools
'"iho importance of this strike
(Continued on Page 8)
Because of Kevin
President of Franz Cornoration Quot
ed as Saying Kevin Field Expected
To Develon Need for Refinery In
That the Kevin-Sunburst oil field is
expected to develop to such production
that the big Franz corporation, pio
in Cat Creek, will build a re
state, is given in a
finely in this
statement to a Helena paper by James
G. Stanley of Denver, president and
general counsel of that company. Ac
cording to the report given the Helena
paper Mr. Stanley figures
increased production of the Cat Creek
and the Kevin field, the supply of
for a refinery in
Mariana is assured for at least three
The fact that the exploration
of the Kevin-Sunburst field has been
the means of bringing the big com
panies to consider putting in a refin
ery in this state is significant, as alt
Standard production from the Cat
Creek has gone to the Wyoming
Speaking of the local field,
Stanley is reported to have said:
have great hopes in the Kevin field
and have already laid a basis for
acquiring production from that field
when developed, which we hope and
expect will produce in such quantity
as to justify our building a refining
plant in Montana."
Another Rig In East
According to information given The
Courier there will be another rig on a
site either in section 7, 8 or 9, 34-2W,
probably in 8 on the Hurley ranch,
Joe Baker having closed a deal with
Skillen & Son and A. J. Eulberg, it hr
said, whereby the former is to drill
well in the near future.
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