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Roughnecks, Rock Bits, and Rigs: The Evolution of Oil Well Drilling Technology in Alberta, 1883-1970

Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 06/04/2015 - 8:27am

Sandy Gow
978-1-55238-444-2 (Institutional PDF)
$44.95 CAD / $51.95 USD
464 pages
156 b&w photographs, 86 diagrams, 3 sketches, 8 maps, appendices, glossary, select bibliography, end notes, index
December 2005


About the Book: 

Roughnecks, Rock Bits, and Rigs is a detailed study of an important and little-documented area of the history of oil and gas in Alberta. It is the first comprehensive study to focus on the technologies that made Alberta's oil industry viable. Author Sandy Gow provides an in-depth look at the evolution of oil well drilling technology from 1883 through 1970, the era of conventional oil exploration in the province. During the early exploration years, the individuals working in the oilfield developed and adapted technologies, such as drill bits and power sources, to suit their specific needs, largely through trial and error. This spirit of innovation and ingenuity is captured in accounts of the evolution of drilling processes and equipment, as well as in the personal stories of those who worked on the rigs. Gow puts the technology of the oilfield into context with an overview of the history and geology of oil and gas in Alberta, as well as a look at the human side of this vital provincial industry.

About the Author(s): 

Sandy Gow is a professor of history at Concordia University College of Alberta.

Winner, 2005 Book of the Year from the Petroleum History Society of Canada