The Gulf Coast Continental Shelf: The birthplace of many early offshore developments

While many aspects of the oil and gas industry—including exploration and advances in technology—slowed to a crawl after WWII, one area of the industry managed to make monumental strides, despite a suppressed commercial environment. Drilling over water, close to land, had been ongoing for more than 40 years by the time the first offshore well was drilled in the Gulf of Mexico. In 1938, Creole oil field—with a 30,000-ft2 platform, about a mile offshore Louisiana, in 14 ft of water—became the first producing property in the Gulf. Then, in 1941, the first oil discovery off the Texas coast was made offshore Jefferson County.

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