Oil Discovery in Jal

On March 7, 1939, the Jal Flare contained an article that recounted the first oil wells in the area. The first discovery well was a wildcat, the Rhodes #1. Drilled in 1927 by Donley Brothers it produced a gas and sweet oil well that flowed mostly gas and some oil. It was quickly followed by Continental Oil Comapny’s Eaves well, south of town and the Shoals wells. Skelly then struck oil on the Joiner lease.

This led to a boom and Jal grew in response. Drilling activity declined over the next few years and population declined until there was another boom of sorts beginning in 1936, when Roy Stovall and Culbertson and Irwin brought in a well in the Jal Sand Area. A dry hole by Phillips was followed by this offset well. The article described the pays on the east side of town as being in sand and on the west being in limestone.

The article concluded by commenting that the discovery of oil was expected to lead to continued growth as surrounding exploratory wells are drilled.

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