Friday, July 30, 2010

Taft, California Oil Field

This picture was taken in 1910, and shows the oil fields in Taft California. If you click on the image, you will get a better look at the details. This really looks like the classic old Western boom town. I wonder if Taft ever became a real city, or just died away after the oil boom.


  1. Oh no. Taft is alive and well today. In fact, Oildorado Days is celebrated this year in October. It only happens every 5 years. This year marks their 100th year for being incorporated. More here:'

    They also have the West Kern Oil Museum:

    It's still a very strong oil town with the Elk Hills Oil Reserve underneath them.


  3. Taft is going strong. In fact, with all the oil revenue, their schools are some of the best funded in the state. Although, as a point of curiosity, their town was originally called Moron (before the term had a negative meaning). The town burned and when it was rebuilt, they renamed their town after the president.

  4. For fun, rent the movie, "The Best of Times" circa 1986. Robin Williams and Kurt Russell are from Taft and play in a football game against rival Bakersfield, years after high school glory. Fun, innocent movie, shows Taft for what it could have been...

  5. Hah! "The Best of Times" - I'd almost forgotten that movie!

  6. I think Huel Howser was in Taft on one of his shows. It wouldn't surprise me at all. I was trying to find some images of Brea Canyon during it's boom. The rigs are all still there, creaky and tottering. It's a little creepy to drive the canyon actually.

    I have a new old photo blog, if anyone is interested. It's Hope you don't mind me linking from here. You partially inspired me to get into the old photo business. ;-)


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