Can we go to McDonald’s?
Two final pictures from my anniversary trip to Los Angeles last week.
First, LIKE if you know what this is:
That’s right boys and girls, ladies and gentlemen, dogs and cats! That’s an oil well!
Oil was discovered in the Los Angeles area in 1892 by Edward Doheny and was the start of the oil industry in Los Angeles. In 1923, Los Angeles was the world’s fifth largest oil producer. The oil well above is in the Wilmington Oil Field, discovered in 1932, and currently the third largest oil field in the United States.
The Wilmington Oil Field originally contained about three billion barrels of oil. About 90% has been recovered, leaving only about 300 million barrels. There are 1,228 oil wells currently operating in the Field, most of them similar to those shown in the picture. They are alongside the road, on beaches, in yards and parking lots…. It’s quite a sight to be driving along at 65 mph and suddenly come upon an oil well seemingly in the middle of the road.
Hundreds of these operating oil wells are visible on the drive along Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1) from around El Segundo to Seal Beach:
It’s a great little drive if you have time to stop and see the sights (otherwise take Interstate 405).
South of El Segundo are the beach volleyball and surfing communities of Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach.
Take a tour of Torrance if you want to see huge (i.e., really really big) oil refineries. I grew up in Texas where oil refineries here and there is the norm, but Torrance probably has the most oil refineries per capita, or at least the highest number of oil refineries per square mile. Whenever you hear of a California oil refinery going off line or being shut down for maintenance, it always seems to be located in Torrance.
Rancho Palos Verdes is an affluent city of 41,600 people. Virtually every home has views of the Pacific Ocean with appropriate dollar values attached to those views.
In Long Beach, stop to see the RMS Queen Mary which sailed the Atlantic Ocean from 1932 to 1967, at one time being the world’s largest, fastest, and most luxurious cruise ship. The City of Long Beach, flush with oil money in 1967 and looking for a way to get out from under the shadows of Los Angeles, bought the RMS Queen Mary upon its retirement and relocated it to the harbor where it is now a major tourist attraction, museum, and hotel — Yes! You can spend a weekend in Long Beach with the Queen Mary as your hotel! While you’re in Long Beach, be sure to see the Aquarium of the Pacific, ranked in my Top 10 aquariums.
Seal Beach is mostly a national wildlife refuge and the huge Naval Weapons Station which stores ammunition for West Coast operations. It comprises 5,256 acres, 230 buildings and 128 ammunition magazines providing 589,299 square feet of ammunition storage space.
My final picture is this one:
I thought it funny that Burger King was located on MacDonald Drive in Huntington Beach, notwithstanding that MacDonald is spelled differently from Burger King’s competitor.
Looking for real estate services in San Diego County?
I can highly recommend
James Frimmer, Realtor
Century 21 Award, DRE #01458572
If you’re looking for a home inspector,
I recommend Russel Ray — that’s me!
Posted on November 4, 2012, in Halls of History, History, Out & About, Photos and tagged oil well pictures, el segundo california, manhattan beach california, redondo beach california, wilmington oil field california, rancho palos verdes california, long beach california, seal beach california, naval weapons station seal beach, edward doheny, torrance california, burger king pictures. Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.