The Shell Deer Park Historical Archives Collection dates from 1927 to 2011 and consists of records acquired by the Shell Deer Park Historical Society. Formed in 1983 by interested employees, the historical society collected Shell records and memorabilia and operated a museum at the Deer Park Manufacturing site from 1990 to 2001. The collection documents the development of the Shell refinery and chemical plant, and it's relationship with the Deer Park, Texas community. The bulk of the materials are photographs of: employees, employee and community events, and the manufacturing site buildings and grounds. Other records include employee publications, blueprints, construction cost reports, annual reports, land surveys, training/operating manuals, Shell magazines, trade magazines, press clippings, and informational booklets.
Open for research.
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93.58 Linear Feet (88 boxes)
The Shell Deer Park Historical Archives Collection dates from 1927 to 2011 and consists of records acquired by the Shell Deer Park Historical Society. The collection documents the development of the Shell refinery and chemical plant in Deer Park, Texas. Records include correspondence, blueprints, operating reports, photographs, employee training manuals, employee publications, press clippings, and information booklets.
Deer Park, Texas was initially settled by Simeon Henry West who arrived to the area from Illinois in 1892. West began plotting his city and soon enough settlers arrived to establish a post office and hotel. However, after several setbacks including the Great Galveston Hurricane of 1900, West sold the town in 1905. Few families remained in Deer Park and by 1922 only four houses were standing.
Deer Park would eventually experience regrowth thanks to the Roxana Petroleum Company of Oklahoma. Formed in 1912 by Royal Dutch Shell Group, Roxana began acquiring oil fields in west Texas. To get its products to an ever expanding market, particularly along the Atlantic coast, access to a seaport was needed. Deer Park being situated along the Houston Ship Channel was chosen as the site for a new crude oil refinery. The Shell Pipe Line Company built a pipeline that stretched for over four hundred miles from McCamey, Texas to the new refinery. Operations began at the refinery August 13, 1929. A chemical plant began operations at the site in 1941.
By 1948 the city of Deer Park was incorporated with the help of a monetary donation from Shell. The manufacturing plant also donated a building to serve as the first city hall and the city's first mayor was a Shell employee.
Wells, Barbara. Shell at Deer Park. Houston: Shell Oil Company, 1979.
Enterprise in Oil A History of Shell in the United States by Kendall Beaton
These records are organized into six series:
Series I. Administrative files, 1927-2004;
Series II. Shell Deer Park Historical Society administrative files, 1928-2011;
Series III. Publications, 1933-2009;
Series IV. Ephemera, 1931-2008;
Series V. Shell Houston Open, 1962-2010;
Series VI. Photographs, 1920s-2000s.
Materials were donated by Shell Oil Company to University of Houston Libraries in 2019.
Shell News digital collection
In 2020, Brooks Whittaker arranged and rehoused the materials, and created the collection description in compliance with current professional standards.
Part of the University of Houston Libraries Special Collections Repository