The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energy Returns to Ohio

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted March 12, 2015

Ohio is returning to the ranks of the country’s leading energy-producing states – thanks to the Utica Shale and safe hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. We say returning, because Ohio was one of the “cradle” states for U.S. oil production.

This “Back to the Future” aspect of Ohio energy is illustrated on the Energy From Shale website in a new photo gallery that features 19th-century photographs alongside contemporary shots for a fascinating then-and-now portrayal of the state’s oil and natural gas development. A sampling:


Tidbits from the page:

  • Ohio’s first oil well was drilled in 1859.
  • Standard Oil was founded by John D. Rockefeller in Cleveland in 1862.
  • In 1895, Ohio was the country’s largest oil producer – and it remained so until 1902 when Oklahoma surpassed it.
  • In the earliest days of production in Ohio, oil was stored in wooden tanks and transported in horse-drawn wagons that could hold 10 barrels – compared to today’s tanker trucks that can carry 150 barrels or more.
  • Because of fracking shale oil and natural gas development has accelerated rapidly, growing from just 85 producing wells in 2012 to 352 in 2013.

Ohio is a cameo in America’s shale energy revolution – a place where oil and natural gas is being developed safely and responsibly, reducing unemployment and generating income for individuals and families and revenues for the state.

Energy development, in turn, is helping lift a number of economic sectors in Ohio – as it is doing in other parts of the country. New API-sponsored content on National Journal’s website focuses on one family’s ties to Ohio’s energy renaissance, as well as the benefits of affordable natural gas to a variety of Ohio businesses and industries. Check it out!



Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.