CALGARY, Jan. 18 /CNW/ - Five oil sands companies - Athabasca Oil Sands, Canadian Oil Sands Limited, Imperial Oil, MEG Energy and Syncrude Canada - have become founding sponsors of a new oral history project conducted by the Petroleum History Society (www.petroleumhistory.ca).

Titled "Preserving Our Oil Sands Story," this oral history project will be a core educational project regarding the oil sands industry, and it will preserve the memories of those who helped create and shape it. By uncovering stories of challenge and innovation, it will contribute to a deeper understanding of how the industry developed and how it functions. It will serve as an important resource for historians, researchers and educators. Project records - including original recordings and digitized transcriptions - will be donated to the Glenbow Museum.

The Glenbow has extensive petroleum-related archives. According to library and archives director Doug Cass, "the oral history recordings produced by the society's previous petroleum industry oral history efforts are among the most-used collections in our archives."

The oil sands project is a continuation of a series of oral history projects that began three decades ago. In Phase I (1981-1985) the Petroleum History Society collected interviews of 223 individuals who played important business or policy-related roles in the creation of the petroleum industry to that time - legendary figures ranging from Carl Nickle (founder of the Daily Oil Bulletin) to Jack Gallagher (founder of Dome Petroleum). Phase II (1999-2004) recorded interviews with many professionals and scientists in the industry.

The purpose of the new initiative is to capture the stories of people who have made important contributions to the oil sands sector. To create a balanced picture of the development of Canada's world-class petroleum deposits, historians need personal recollections to breathe life into the academic, corporate and government reports and legal documents that provide so much of the raw material of industrial history. These recollections comprise a body of work known as oral history, which has enabled historians to move beyond the usual confines of documentary research.

Non-funding sponsors of this project include the Glenbow Museum, JuneWarren-Nickles Energy Group, the Energy Futures Network and CNW Group.

The not-for-profit Petroleum History Society is chartered under the laws of Alberta. A major society focus is to help preserve and protect the recollections of industry pioneers.

SOURCE Petroleum History Society

For further information:

Petroleum History Society     
C/o Glenbow Archives      
130 - 9 Avenue SE
Calgary, Alberta       
T2G 0P3  

Peter McKenzie-Brown  
403-475-0160; pmbcomm@gmail.com

Robert Bott
403-283-7560; bottr@nucleus.com

Adriana A. Davies, C.M., Ph.D.
780-483-9191; aadavies@shaw.ca

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Petroleum History Society

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