Murray Heller Warren (1854-1925)
I found the clipping of this article in a file folder passed down to me after my grandparents passed away. The original source of the article is unknown published c. 1910.
MEN KNOWN IN OILDOM
M. H. WARREN
Perhaps the best index to M. H. Warren's experience in following the shifting fortunes of petroleum is the fact that from "Church Run south, to Mexcio," he has followed the game, and now, turning north, he leaves Mexico for Oklahoma. Mr. Warren was born in Gettysburg, Adams County, Pennsylvania, before Drake drilled the famous well. His grandfather was Thaddeus Stevens' Ironmaster. In 1867 Mr. Warren became enamored with the possibilities of oil at Titusville. In 1875 he commenced producing for his own account. In 1877, at Summit City, Bradford District, he formed a partnership, the firm being known as Clark & Warren, and later the C & W brand of lubricants became favorably known. In the winter of 1877, Mr. Warren drilled and harnessed the first gasser ever controlled in that region, and he laid a local gas line selling gas for fuel to the drilling rigs at Summit City; later he sold this well and line to J. N. Pew, and it was the nucleus of a famous gas line. Two years later, in Sawyer City, he built the first refinery to be erected there, manufacturing lubricating oil and filtered cylinder stocks. In 1881 he built a refinery at Corry, PA, this plant having a charging capacity of 800 barrels, and in it were manufactured all classes of lubricants.
Mr. Warren went to the Mid-Continent when the Cudahys were drilling at Muskogee, and did his best to influence Pittsburgh capital at that time to go into that field. "When I told them that production there could be piped to the gulf they told me I was crazy," he says. "Eight years later it was done." When Spindletop broke he built the big Port Arthur refinery for the Mellon interests, and in March, 1907 he arrived in Mexico for the then Waters-Pierce Oil Co. At that time the only proven field of commercial worth was Ebano (Doheny-Canfield), and Ebano crude was and is the heaviest gravity crude produced in Mexico, being something under 12 degrees on the Beaume scale. Waters-Pierce had a small refinery at Vera Cruz at the time, while its present big plant in Tampico had been in operation since 1896, but was running on crude imported in tank steamers from the United States, the oil being refined at Tampico and Vera Cruz for Mexican consumption. Mr. Warren made alterations and experimented with Ebano crude until he was securing 27 per cent of refined oils (inclusive of gasoline) from it. The closing months of 1910 saw the development of the lighter gravity pools in what is now commonly referred to as the Southern Fields in Mexico (Juan Casiano, Potrero del Llano, etc.), and refiners' attention was naturally turned to this production, which is rich in lighter products and in high-grade lubricants.
He leaves Mexico now to return to Oklahoma as general manager of the North American Oil & Refining Corporation, producers and refiners, with headquarters in Oklahoma City.