Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V20, Page 35 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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OIL CITY, a city of Venango county, Pennsylvania, U.S.A., on the Allegheny river, at the mouth of Oil Creek, about 55 M. S.S.E. of Erie and about 135 M. N. of Pittsburg. Pop. (189o) 10,932; (1900) 13,264, of whom 2001 were foreign-born and 184 were negroes; (1910 census) 15,6J7. It is served by the Pennsylvania (two lines), the Erie, and the Lake Shore & Michigan Southern railways. The city lies about I000 ft. above the sea, and is divided by the river and the creek into three sections connected by bridges. The business part of the city is on the low ground north of the river; the residential districts are the South Side, a portion of the flats, the West Side, and Cottage Hill and Palace Hill on the North Side. Oil City is the centre ' and the principal market of the Pennsylvania oil region. It has extensive oil refineries and foundries and machine shops, and manufactures oil-well supplies and a few other commodities. The city's factory products were valued at $5,164,059 in 1900 and at $3,217,208 in 1905, and in the latter year foundry and machine-shop products were valued at $2,317,505, or 72 % of the total. Natural gas is used for power, heat and light. Oil City was founded in 186o, incorporated as a borough in 1863 and chartered as a city in 1874. The city was partially destroyed by 'flood in 1865, and by flood and fire in 1866 and again in 1882; on this last occasion Oil Creek was swollen by a loud-burst on the 5th of June, and several tanks farther up the valley, which seem to have been struck by lightning, gave way and a mass of burning oil was carried by the creek to Oil City, where some sixty lives were lost and property valued at moreethan $1,000,000 was destroyed.
End of Article: OIL CITY

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