1885, the Pennsylvania State Geologist: “the amazing exhibition of oil was only a ‘temporary and vanishing phenomenon – one which young men will live to see come to its natural end.”

1885, John Archbold, partner in Standard Oil: “I’ll drink every gallon of oil found west of the Mississippi”

1909: Titusville Herald: “Petroleum has been used for less than 50 years, and it is estimated that the supply will last about 25 or 30 years longer. If production is curtailed and waste stopped it may last till the end of the century. The most important effects of its disappearance will be in the lack of illuminants. Animal and vegetable oils will not begin to supply its place. This being the case, the reckless exploitation of oil fields and the consumption of oil for fuel should be checked.” Link.

1919, Oil and Gas News: “In meeting the world’s needs, however, the oil from the United States will continue to occupy a less and less dominant position, because within the next two to five years the oil fields of this country will reach their maximum production and from [then] on we will face an ever-increasing decline.”

1920, US President Wilson: “There seemed to be no method by which we could assure ourselves of the necessary supply [of oil] at home and abroad.”