A Day to Remember: The Discovery of Oil in North Dakota

“Light the flare.” With those words, Blackie Davidson tossed up a lighted, oil-soaked rag and the gas started to burn in a 30-foot-long flare. This was the real beginning – the opening of the Williston Basin to oil production on April 4, 1951. The discovery of oil will always be remembered by those who were in North Dakota at the time. Its effect on the state and the nation can never be properly assessed.

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