Welcome To KEY TO THE CITY's Page For
Osage County, Oklahoma
Barnsdall, Oklahoma was originally named Bigheart. Mr.Bigheart was an indian of the Cherokee tribe and he struck oil at the Birch Lake area in the early 1900's (Birch Lake was man made in 1971 , it wasn't there when he struck oil) About 1.5 miles away from the oil site, a town began to emerge. Later, the town was named Bigheart for he was the one that found the oil that provided jobs for the people of the community. Some time after, Mr. T.N. Barnsdall bought the town from Mr.Bigheart. The actual price is unknown. Mr.Barnsdall was also the owner of BARECO (BArnsdallREfineingCOmpany). During the 1920's oil boom, town then was oil fever and it grew to a estimate of 2,000. It grew larger to the town's highest population ever of about 3,000 people in the 1950's to 70's. (Accurate date unknown). Barnsdall was in the Ripley's "Believe it or Not" for the World's only main street oil well. That's right, the town has an oil well right in the middle of Main Street. The town now is home to about 2,100 people. It still has the BARECO refinery, but it is no longer BARECO. It doesn't refine oil anymore either. It is a wax refinery and it is owned by Baker Hughes. Barnsdall has three schools - an Elementary , a Junior High & a High School combined. (The elementary isn't part of the JR High and High School).
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