Sterling City, Tx. 1925. Blue line map on drafting linen, approximately 31 x 20 inches. Folded. Minor wear at edges. Some toning and scattered light soiling. Contemporary manuscript annotations. Very good. Item #2200
A rare land ownership and oil development map of mid-1920s Sterling County, in West Texas between Midland and San Angelo. The map shows ownership for every plat in the county, as well as the locations of scattered oil wells in the sparsely populated region; the information present was first compiled in 1919 by local surveyor W.F. Kellis, and drawn by an Austin draftsman, G.C. Morris. It was then revised twice by hand in 1924 and 1925 to update its ownership information before being printed in this form. The map also contains extensive manuscript annotations and shading that reflects more recently drilled oil wells and plats whose mineral rights had been purchased by various oil companies. A manuscript legend at upper right delineates the different colors for the ten companies active in the county at this time, and approximately one quarter of the map is shaded, mostly the plats south and west of Sterling City, the county seat. Interestingly, the Handbook of Texas states that oil was not discovered in the county until after World War II; nevertheless, this map shows plenty of activity in the area over twenty years prior. We locate no versions of this map located in OCLC; a valuable record of development in this small West Texas county during the early 1920s.