In 1800, Irish immigrant Ambrose Rynd purchased a 500-acre tract of land in the Oil Creek from the Holland Land Company. He built a cabin on the property and dedicated the rest of his life to farming the land. Nearly 60 years later, his grandson John Rynd II owned the then 300-acre farm when oil fever struck the region.
John Rynd quickly leased his property to eager oil prospectors and drilling commenced in 1861. The farm proved to be oil rich almost immediately when the Rynd Well struck, initially producing 500 barrels a day. More flowing wells followed, and by the spring of 1862, Rynd Farm had produced 28,000 barrels of oil.
In 1864, John Rynd sold the farm to the Rynd Farm Oil Company of New York, and moved his family to southwest Pennsylvania. Under new management, the oil farm continued to flourish. Drilling and production increased, a village developed on the west side of Oil Creek, and five refiners processed 1,000 barrels of crude oil weekly.