Fund Raising Projects
Bailing Out Days
One of our most successful fund raisers, The Giant Yard Sale was held on May 13 & 14, 2005 on the Musuem grounds. Please Note...we are held this sale in May instead of September this year due to planning for Oildorado. Bailing Out Days is one of our most successful fund raisers. Only articles donated specifically for the yard sale are sold. Whatever is given to the Musuem as artifacts are never touched. There were bargains galore ranging from furniture, linens, TV's, dishes, clothes, toys, etc.
Our 1917 wooden derrick standing
over its original well is the last of over 7000 wooden derricks that once stood on the
Westside stretching from east of Sunset, engulfing the towns, covering the hills (25 Hill,
Buena Vista Hills, Elk Hills) past the oilcamps and Midway Valley to McKittrick, Cymric
and on toward Belridge. Today, time has weakened and weather has rotted the original
wood of the rig so that it is impossible to nail it anymore and thus save the original
However, we have a plan and the original blueprint. The plan is to build a duplicate wooden rig, 106 ft. tall, over the original well - saving the original bull wheel, band wheel, calf wheel, sand reel, walking beam, crown block, the original belt hall and engine house. As you can tell, this well was drilled with cable tools (the old fashioned method).
Since there are no more living rig builders, we plan to build the derrick leg by leg, girt by girt out of preserved wood using skilled carpenters and re-erect it over the original hole with large cranes. Since a 2" X 12" is no longer 12" but rather 11 5/8", we are having to have the wood rough sawn according to the original derrick plans. We know the exact cost of each piece of wood and the crane rental. We have priced each section of the well at $1000. However, there are four sides to a section; therefore contributions of $250 would count toward the sections. Donations of any amount will be accepted though towards raising the derrick. All donors' names will be placed on a large permanent plaque near the base of the derrick. To be part of saving this derrick and a large piece of California history, donations may be mailed to:
West Kern Oil Museum
Taft, CA 93268
Your name (individual, family or company) will be placed on the plaque. The project is a little more expensive than first planned. We are still accepting donations for the derrick fund if you would like to still contribute. All donations are tax deductible and each donor will receive an official receipt.
UPDATE (07/2005) - The new 106' Wooden Derrick is standing with work on the engine house soon to begin. Click Here to see more information!