Founding of Petrolia, The

Following the discovery of oil at Oil Springs in 1857, prospectors extended their search to the entire township of Enniskillen. At the site of Petrolia, which contained two small settlements with post offices named Durance and Ennis, a well was brought into production in 1860. The following year, a small refinery was opened and the Durance post office renamed "Petrolea." At first, eclipsed by Oil Springs, the community developed slowly. However, in 1865-66, a series of discoveries culminating in the drilling of the King well established Petrolia as the major oil producing centre in Canada, and its population soared from about 300 to some 2,300. Incorporated as the village of Petrolia in 1866, it became a town on January 1, 1874.


At the town hall, 411 Greenfield Street, Petrolia

Region: Southwestern Ontario

County/District: County of Lambton

Municipality: Town of Petrolia