Oil & Gas Journal celebrates 100 years

Friday, May 24th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Their mission was to tell the truth and nothing but the truth without fear or favor to any person, firm, or corporation.

A century later, the people who make the Oil and Gas Journal, say that's still their motto. The magazine held its 100th birthday party in Tulsa Friday. As News on Six business reporter Steve Berg tells us, their roots in our town are deep. First published on this date in 1902 in Beaumont, Texas, The Oil and Gas Journal, and then known as the Oil Investors Journal, is older than Oklahoma statehood, even older than a certain other local publication, as the current publisher is quick to joke. “Because that makes us three years older than my good friend Bob Lorton's ‘Tulsa World.’”

They celebrated the Oil and Gas Journal's birthday Friday in true Tulsa-style with a barbecue outside PennWell Publishing. The journal was the company's first publication. "I guess you'd call it the bedrock of PennWell Publishing Company."

Publisher Tom Terrell says the Journal is not the typical feature-laden trade magazine. Called the "Bible" of the industry, he says its taken pride in its hard-hitting, factual foundation. “Sometimes they were popular stands, sometimes they weren't popular stands." "And we haven't been afraid through our fine editorial product to talk about issues that needed to be addressed.”

Editor Bob Tippee says this letter from a 1907 subscriber says it all. "Enclosed find check for the journal for the next year and hope you will keep up the high standard you have maintained for truth and honesty. Yours truly, W.E. Niles.” The Oil and Gas Journal name dominates the building, but nowadays, PennWell publishes four dozen different magazines. ” We’re kind of a quiet company in that regard, but I think we provide more information to the industries that we serve on a probably more accurate and ethical way than any other publishing company in America does.”

The editorial and reporting staff has moved to Houston, but PennWell still employs 250 people at the Tulsa headquarters.