ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Education and Science»
  • History & Archaeology

Howard County Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas

Updated on June 5, 2014

Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas

Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas
Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas | Source

Drilling For Oil

Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas


Commercial Oil Discovery In Forsan Texas

Commercial Oil discovery for Howard County was the great thing for this little town a few miles south of Big Spring, Texas what ensued after Fred Hyer made his discovery is entailed in this article of blood,  sweat and the happiness of the early nineteen hundreds in a dusted out,  mesquite tree living area of western Texas that somehow changed with the everlasting love for oil. This took place in 1925, with the big find and then with Fred Hyer’s warm-heartedness and wealth added to the place the kind that dreams are made of in fairy tales.



Forsan, Texas is a small community approximately 12 miles south of Big Spring, Texas in the western part of Texas. The population is around four hundred people at this writing in April of the year 2011. In 1917 there were about two to three oil wells that were being worked in this area. This was the start to a boom to hit this tiny dusted area in the middle of nowhere twelve miles south of Big Spring, Texas. The city started to change in November9th, 1925 when Fred Hyer. A gambling wildcatter made a discovery of a gusher,  and  started pumping the first commercial Oil well in Howard county. Mr. Hyer drilled this well on a piece of land owned by Mr. Clay at the time and hit oil at just fifteen hundred and eight feet with this particular well. The town since that day was never the same in Forsan, Texas. Mr. Fred Hyer was now a wealthy man and his years of struggle had finally paid off for him with this oilwell. This well was one of the Permian Basins richest oil repositories in the state of Texas at this time. In the year 2008 this well has produced three hundred barrels of oil from this time of 1925.. There is a State Historical Marker at the intersection of U.S. 87 and F.M. 821 dedicated to this discovery.



Needless to say this was the draw to the “Oil Boom”, of this area in 1926. The town of Forsan would never be the same dust bowl it was when first laid eyes on this town. The city didn’t even have electricity, water, or gas until 1928, before this time this was just a tent city of hundreds of settlers were finding jobs on oil rigs were about four thousand barrels of oil were being excavated in this year. Forsan received its name from the production in the area coming from four sands. In 1929 homes were being built to live in one and two room houses, and the people were swarming with the place because of all the work. Many of the homes were called,”oil camps” in 1930 when major oil companies came in by the car and truckloads of equipment and men.



The whole oil boom craze had Forsan with a set of stores, a couple of dance halls, filling stations, and hotels. A regular town developed just as quickly as it left as you will find out. There were a church and school, the whole families were moving in quicker than the construction could keep up. This was happening in 1930 and commotion was abounding to this community. Fred Hyer was one of the big shots of town who gave people work in the oil fields and praised those that worked hard.



Fred Hyer will always be known as the man who found the Howard-Glasscock oil field that started out the  Boom” in Big Spring in the mid-1920s as per the Big Spring Herald in 1987 reads. Fred Hyer was actually touted by Mr. H.R. Clay, who owned the land that the discovery took place in Forsan by telling Mr. Hyer, he wanted him to drill on his land in Howard county , and said “What’s the matter can’t you drill there”. Well, Mr. Hyer took the bait and went and found the oil on Mr. Clay’s land after he figured his strategy for where to drill. He struck the big one by not relying on geological maps but his own thoughts as to where the oil deposits would possibly be.



The town of Forsan resembles a ghost town, with drilling company water and oil trucks coming in and out of the town. There is one light in the middle of town, and a few old houses, must have been turned into mechanical rooms for monitoring the oils and gas activities. The school is still there, a refurbished one, and about Four hundred residents left. When you drive into Forsan,  there is a bunch of stares you will get if you’re not in a company pickup or tractor trailer. The town pretty much to itself in the middle of wind turbines and Mesquite trees. The commercial discovery of oil back in 1925 by Mr. Hyer will never be forgotten by the local residents that are still alive, and since he was my grandfather, I thought it appropriate to let him shine.

Christopher Hyer4.14.2011


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • tomy101 profile image

      Christopher Hyer 5 years ago from Midland, Texas

      Interesting , I know Dora Roberts grandson , he is my age, almost 50, so the story still lives, how nice. Thank You for your input.

    • profile image

      ronnie carlson 6 years ago

      i am grandson of earl thompson, superintendent of amerada oil mother, jessie maxine thompson, uncle james thompson and aunt dora jane thompson, all graduated from forsan high grandmother, edna thompson, worked at first baptist church, lived in camp until grandad died in 1950...lige blankenship, whitey griffith, paul gordon, slim and elsie all lived in amerada camp, east of grandad was a wildcatter from pennsylvania, received letter from dora roberts asking him to come to forsan way back in 1920's..he was a pretty rough man but respected by his employees and others..he improved the power house operation used back then to operate the camp, i remember larry, raymond, verna joe and billie ruth blankenship kids, also, paula gordon, gay and sondra griffith as kids growing up there in the amerada camp...