American Well and Prospecting Company
Historical Marker
Corsicana, Navarro County, Texas



Photo by Dana Stubbs

American Well and 
Prospecting Co.

Organized in Kansas in 1890 by Horace Greeley Johnston (1851-1930) of Ohio and Pennsylvania native Charles Rittersbacher (1857-1919), this company began as a water well drilling in Corsicana. In 1894, while drilling on South 12th Street, they struck crude oil, which led to the discovery of the Corsicana Oil Field. The firm began making and distributing rotary drilling equipment in 1900. Converted to a munitions plant in World War II, the business was sold to Bethlehem steel and operated at this site until 1959. (1982)

Location: 500 East 6th Ave., Corsicana, Texas


The text of the historical markers have been posted here with the permission of the Texas Historical Commission

Dedication Program

Saturday, April 3, 1982 - 3 P.M.

Master of Ceremonies ... J. Forest Green, Chairman Navarro County Historical Commis.

Invocation ... Nelson Ross, N.C.H. Society

Dedicatory Remarks ... Tommy Stringer, Vice Pres. N.C.H. Society

Acceptance of Marker ... Jack McFerran, Mayor, City of Corsicana

Unveiling of Marker ... Mrs. Jane Hodge and Mrs. Edgar Ritterbacher

Historical Research by Tommy Stringer, Vice President, Navarro County Historical Society

Navarro County TXGenWeb
Copyright February, 2020
Edward L. Williams