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Published April 04, 2011, 10:30 AM

North Dakota Oil Anniversary

North Dakota's oil patch marked its 60th anniversary on Monday and government estimates show the industry is still in its infancy.

By: Associated Press, WDAZ

North Dakota's oil patch marked its 60th anniversary on Monday and government estimates show the industry is still in its infancy.

On April 4, 1951, Amerada Corp.'s well struck oil on Clarence Iverson's wheat farm in northwest North Dakota.

State Industrial Commission records show that 1.85 billion barrels have been produced in North Dakota since then. State estimates show at least twice that remains untapped in the Bakken shale and the Three Forks formation below it.

The Bakken has been the biggest producer of crude in recent years. But it has accounted for just 11 percent of the crude pumped from the state's oil patch to date. Nearly half of the oil in the past 60 years has come from the Madison formation.

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