This Pump Jack is typical of the many that were in operation in Bloomingdale in the late 30's and early 40's.
On August 13th, 1938, after several days of drilling on the Wiggins Farm, which borders the village on the north, the Fisher McCall Oil Company brought in a gusher and oil flew in the air. There was a scramble to rent land on which to park house cars or pitch tents. Some dwellings were converted into apartments. Ninety wells were drilled in the next ninety days. 19,000,000 barrels were produced from Bloomingdale wells in 1938 alone.
The town population swelled from 500 to over 1000 in just a couple of months. There were 15 wells drilled on the Wiggins Farm within 16 months and over 108 wells were eventually drilled within the corporate limits of Bloomingdale. As many as 85 railroad tank cars pulled out of Bloomingdale on a single day from the two refineries.
The oil wealth was short lived, however. By 1950 only a few wells were still producing. Most of the pumps and pipes had been pulled out and the oil boom was over.
Donated by Christian Oil Company in memory of Howard "Buck" Hartman, founder, Christian Oil Company, 1946