Mississippi native John F. O'Donohue (1885 - 1967) first came to Wichita Falls in 1909 as a scout for the J. M. Guffey Petroleum Company, which later became the Gulf Oil Corporation. While staying in the Jolene Hotel, the
wildcatter O'Donohue staked out the company's first lease in Clay County in what became known as the Petrolia Oilfield near Henrietta. Without the assistance of a surveyor, he located the company's first major discovery
well in the area.
After leaving the Guffey Company, O'Donohue opened an office in the Anderson-Bean building at this site, where other significant businesses, such as Wichita Truck, Wichita Falls Traction Co. and Floral Heights Realty had also operated. In 1916, he was appointed manager of the Wichita Falls Fuel and Development Company, a firm established by the city's Chamber of Commerce. He continued his success in the oil business, organizing the United Petroleum Producers Company in 1919. The next year, he joined the Cline Oil Company, and in 1927 he organized the Petroleum Producers
Company, serving for many years as the group's president. In 1941, Shell Oil bought all of the stock in the company.
O'Donohue married Carrie Kell, daughter of oilman and miller Frank Kell, with whom O'Donohue was associated. Active in the local community, O'Donohue served as chair on the
board of MIdwestern University (now Midwestern State University). He also served as a director of many industry institutions: Independent Petroleum Associates of America, North Texas Oil and Gas Association, and Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association of Texas, as well as Wichita Falls' First National Bank. In 1941, the Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association honored O'Donohue with a Distinguished Service Award. He died in 1967 and was buried in the city's Crestview Memorial Park. Today, he is remembered for helping establish Wichita Falls in the