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1930 Decade: How It All Began


On 11 March, the Society of Economic Geophysicists was founded by 30 geoscientists at the University Club in Houston. Donald C. Barton was elected president, E. E. Rosaire vice president, and John F. Weinzierl secretary treasurer. The Society's Constitution and Bylaws were adopted on 20 May by the following charter members: D. C. Barton, L. W. Blau, E. E. Blondeau, D. P. Carlton, L. G. Christie, Henry C. Cortes, Helmut Dorsch, J. Brian Eby, D. G. Emrick, Eugene Fekete, Helmer Hedstrom, Christian Iden, A. I. Innes, Fritz Kaselitz, A. D. Kerns, J. E. LaRue, O. C. Lester Jr., W. H. Mannes, Eugen Merten, E. E. Rosaire, Russell F. Ryan, J. P. Schumacher, A. L. Smith, M. Elisabeth Stiles, A. D. Storm, Olaf F. Sundt, Raoul Vajk, John F. Weinzierl, L. H. Williams, and B. O. Winkler. A committee was appointed to study petition of affiliation with AAPG. Honorary Memberships were awarded to Ludger Mintrop and Everette L. DeGolyer. SEG papers 1 and 2 were published in mimeograph form in 1931 as a group of papers presented before the Society in 1930. Paper 1: "A universal slope chart for use with seismic method of geophysical prospecting (refractions)" by O. C. Lester Jr. and S. W. Wilcox. Paper 2: "A suggested method of approach for determination of salt dome overhang" by O. C. Lester Jr. Standing Committees: Nominations and Annual Meeting. Dues US$5.


The name of the Society was changed to the Society of Petroleum Geophysicists. SPG's first convention was held on 21 March in San Antonio together with AAPG. Vol. 1, Transactions of the Society of Petroleum Geophysicists was published in December by AAPG; it contained papers presented at the convention in San Antonio. SPG also met with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the American Physical Society (APS) in New Orleans on 29-30 December. Another officer was added to the Executive Committee: Paul Weaver was elected first editor.


Affiliation was accepted by AAPG and a charter was issued to the Society of Petroleum Geophysicists on 6 April as the official "Division of Geophysics of the AAPG." The convention was held on 25 March in Oklahoma City. Membership: 96


The third Annual Meeting was in Houston on 24 March. The Society continued to meet with AAPG in conventions through 1955. Membership: 103


Vol. IV, Transactions of the Society of Petroleum Geophysicists was published by AAPG in January. The Annual Meeting was held in Dallas on 24 March. Membership: 166


The convention was held 21-23 March in Wichita. A Midyear Meeting was held in Dallas on 29 November, with L. W. Blau as program chairman; 80 attended, 13 papers were presented. F. M. Kannenstine was elected first Editor of Geophysics for 1935 37. He edited the three issues in Vol. 1 (1936) and the first issue of Vol. 2. E. E. Rosaire and M. Elisabeth Stiles served as Associate Editors. A mail ballot was established for the election of officers. Membership: 189


SPG's name was changed to the Society of Exploration Geophysicists on 1 January 1 1937. SEG resigned as a division of AAPG and applied for status as an affiliated society. Vol. 1, no. 1 of Geophysics, A Journal of General and Applied Geophysics was published in January 1936, F. M. Kannenstine, Editor. The first article, "Black magic in geophysical prospecting" by L. W. Blau had been presented at the 1935 Dallas midyear meeting. The first issue also included the first Annual Regional Geophysical Activities Report (for 1935). The journal was published quarterly until 1958. The Annual Meeting was held on 19-21 March at the Tulsa Hotel; 35 papers were presented.

Personals: E. E. Rosaire resigned as president of Independent Exploration Co. and organized Subterrex, a company engaged in geophysics and geochemistry. ... L. W. Blau was promoted to head the geophysics and production research divisions of Humble Oil and Refining Co. Membership: 231


AAPG approved SEG's application as an affiliated society; their joint convention was held 17-19 March in Los Angeles. Geophysics, a quarterly, published issues in January, March, July, and October. J. P. D. Hull of AAPG, Tulsa, was appointed temporary business manager of SEG with offices transferred from Houston to Tulsa. This was done to relieve new Secretary Treasurer Elisabeth Stiles of excessive work. John H. Wilson, 1936-37 secretary treasurer, ended his annual report as follows: "I give up the office with relief and extend my sympathy to my successor." The Society's 3rd Midyear Meeting was held on 19-20 November at the Rice Hotel in Houston. SEG was incorporated in Colorado on February 24. The agreement was signed by E. E. Rosaire, B. B. Weatherby, and L. W. Blau, former Presidents of SEG. Membership: 481


A total of 157 delegates attended the Annual Meeting, 15-17 March, in New Orleans; 26 papers were presented in four geophysical sessions plus one joint session with AAPG. Plans to appoint a permanent business manager fell through and Secretary Treasurer M. Elisabeth Stiles continued to deal with applications for membership plus all business matters of the Society. In addition, E. E. Rosaire (1934-35) served the entire year as advertising manager/salesman for Geophysics. No Midyear Meeting was held as not enough papers were submitted. Membership: 672. Dues: Active US$5, Associate US$4.


SEG headquarters was established in Austin, Texas with J. F. Gallie as business manager. 350 attended the 9th Annual Meeting, 21-23 March in Oklahoma City; 39 papers were presented; F. M. Kannenstine served as Technical Program Chairman. The Midyear Meeting was canceled again. New Committees: Business, Annual Meeting Program, and Committee for Standardization of Terms. The Patents Section first appeared in the October issue of Geophysics.

Personals: Curtis H. Johnson, formerly of Rieber Laboratories, is now associated with General Petroleum Corp . ... H. J. McCready joined Mott Smith Corp. and is based in Santander, Colombia ...R. D. Wyckoff, Gulf R&D, has been transferred from Houston to Pittsburgh ... G. F. Kaufmann, Standard Oil Co. of Venezuela transferred from Caripito to Caracas. Membership: 821

1940 Decade: War and Peace


Student membership was established at US$3 per year. The first Cumulative Index, R. D. Wyckoff, Editor, appeared in July. SEG's 10th Annual Meeting (together with AAPG and SEPM) in Chicago, 9-11 April, attracted 206 SEG delegates; W. T. Born served as Program Committee Chairman. Three new books on geophysical prospecting by distinguished members of SEG were published almost simultaneously in 1940: Exploration Geophysics, by J. J. Jakosky; Geophysical Exploration, by C. A. Heiland; and Geophysical Prospecting for Oil, by L. L. Nettleton (all were reviewed in Geophysics in January 1941). Donald C. Barton, founding member and first president of SEG, was elected to Honorary Membership posthumously in recognition of his work in founding the Society and in furthering the science of geophysics; he also served as president of AAPG in 1938-39.

Personals: W. B. Perry returned to Shawnee, Oklahoma from Trinidad ... Elmer W. Ellsworth now serving as a geologist with Independent Oil Producers Association of Illinois ... United Geophysical Co. opened a new laboratory in Pasadena ... George M. Bevier moved to San Antonio to do independent geophysical and geological work ... F. H. Agee, party chief with National Geophysical Co. is now located in Cuba. Membership: 892


The Business Office of the Society was transferred to Houston. 704 attended the Annual Meeting in Houston; hotel accommodations at 12 hotels (including the Rice, Lamar, and Warwick) were offered at US$2.50 single and US$4 double! H. B. Peacock served as Program Committee Chairman. Authors' biographies and photographs appeared in the July issue of Geophysics for the first time. Some authors in that issue: Francis F. Campbell, L. L. Nettleton, W. T. Born, and Norman Ricker.

Personals: Howard Itten, recent graduate of Colorado School of Mines, has joined Stanolind Oil and Gas Co. in Scott City, Kansas ... Stan W. Wilcox transferred from Jackson, Mississippi to Wichita, Kansas, where he opened a district office for Seismograph Service Corp. ... C. H. Dix moved from New York to Pasadena ... Harry H. Sisson is now with General Geophysical Co. in Houston. Membership: 907


The business office moved again! This time to Washington, D.C. Denver hosted the Annual Meeting with Frank Goldstone serving as Program Chairman. 130 registered for the convention, 22-24 April; 22 papers were presented in two sessions. SEG purchased a US$2000 war bond. A War Effort Advisory Committee was appointed with B. B. Weatherby serving as chairman.

Personals: Neal J. Smith, California Co., transferred from Houston to New Orleans ... O. B. Manes resigned from Independent Exploration Co. and joined Stanolind Oil & Gas in Beeville, Texas ... Marvin Romberg returned safely from Sumatra and is now with Carter Oil Co. in Tulsa ... Louis C. Pakiser accepted employment as "attached helper" with Carter Oil. Membership: 941


SEG members in the armed services were given "inactive" status to be reinstated upon return to civilian life. The U.S. Dept. of State's Division of Cultural Relations sent microfilm copies of Geophysics and other technical journals to China. The convention was held in Fort Worth at the Hotel Texas, 7-9 April; there were 188 SEG registrants, 31 papers, and L. L. Nettleton served as Program Chairman. O. F. Ritzmann is new editor of the Patents section in Geophysics. E. V. McCollum and Craig Ferris resigned from Mott Smith Corp. and formed E. V. McCollum and Co. to engage in gravity and seismic exploration. Membership: 1004


The first Index of Wells Shot for Velocity, edited by B. G. Swan, was published as a supplement to October Geophysics. 246 attended the 14th Annual Meeting in Dallas, March 21-23; Cecil Green served as Chairman of the Program/Arrangements Committee. St. Louis University organized an Institute of Geophysical Technology with James B. Macelwane, S.J. as dean. The Petroleum Administration for War announced that in September there were 481 geophysical units operating in the US, up 72 since January: 290 seismic, 124 gravimeter, 47 core drill, 17 magnetic, two electrical, and one torsion balance.

Personals: Milton B. Dobrin conducted a 15 week night course in petroleum geophysics at George Washington University, sponsored by the U.S. Office of Education ... Ensign H. J. McCready stationed now at the Naval Training Station at Princeton, N.J. A. A. Hunzicker, party chief with Texas Co., transferred from Mt. Vernon to Nashville, Illinois ... Jack F. Judson, United Geophysical Co., transferred from San Felipe, Venezuela to Caracas ... The business office moved again to El Dorado, Arkansas. Membership: 1135; Student Members: 7


Because of government restrictions on travel, a regular convention was not held in 1945; a one day official 15th Annual Meeting was convened in Tulsa (not with AAPG) with Henry Cortes as General Chairman. Additional one day meetings were held in Houston on 20 April and in Dallas on 3 May. The Pacific Coast Section of SEG sponsored another one day meeting in Los Angeles on 7 November with O. C. Lester as program chairman; more than 200 attended. "Preparation of a manuscript for publication in Geophysics," by L. L. Nettleton, appeared in the July issue.

Personals: J. F. Gallie, former SEG business manager, resigned from Arkansas Oil & Gas Division in El Dorado and joined Cabot Carbon Co. ... Paul M. Tucker is now with Standard Oil of Cuba in Havana ... Major Lynn D. Ervin, after 32 months of overseas duty with the Marines in the Pacific, has returned to Camp Lejeune. Membership: 1263


A business office for SEG was finally established in Tulsa with Colin C. Campbell as business manager, replacing Elisabeth Stiles who had served again as interim business manager. The Constitution was amended to allow for affiliation by local sections. The convention returned to Chicago on 1-4 April with J. J. Jakosky serving as program chairman; the Monday afternoon session was made up of all case histories. SEG purchased a US$6000 savings bond. A one day regional meeting was held 25 April in Houston. The 2nd Annual Pacific Coast SEG/AAPG/SEPM meeting was held 7-8 November in Los Angeles. The Reviews section was added as a regular department in Geophysics. New Committees: Student Membership, Best Paper Award, Geophysical Education, and an editorial committee formed to assist in selection and preparation of papers for the Geophysical Case Histories Volume, Henry C. Cortes, Chairman.

Personals: Donald R. Brown, formerly with Shell Oil in Houston, accepted a position as chief geophysicist with Caribbean Petroleum Co. in Caracas ... H. J. Kidder joined Socony Vacuum in Bogota, Colombia ... Albert W. Musgrave RT2/C has been transferred to the Industrial Command Division 12 1, Naval Repair Base in San Diego ... Robert J. Watson, former geophysicist with Carter Oil in Tulsa, is now exploration manager for Standard Oil Co. (Bahamas) Ltd. in Nassau. Membership: 1379


Early Geophysical Papers was compiled under the direction of L. L. Nettleton, Special Editor. The Constitution and Bylaws were revised to include a council as governing body of the Society and providing for section representatives, representatives at large, and a Code of Ethics. The Geophysical Society of Tulsa was organized with 150 charter members on 4 February and petitioned for affiliation with SEG. The Best Paper Award was approved. The convention was held in Los Angeles, 25-27 March, with Cecil H. Green serving as chairman; 62 papers were presented and 261 delegates attended. The Ladies Entertainment Program offered tickets to a "Queen for a Day" broadcast. New standing committees: Constitution and Bylaws, Public Relations and Publicity, Special Reviews, and Geophysical Activity. The first Eastern Regional Meeting of SEG was held in Pittsburgh on 6 June. The University of Tulsa Student Geophysical Society was formed with Chet Jameson as President.

Personals: Edward G. Schempf, VP/supervisor for United Geophysical, transferred to company headquarters in Pasadena ... Gerald H. Westby, president of Seismograph Service Corp., was elected president of the Tulsa Chamber of Commerce ... Theodore Koulomzine is now chairman of the new Committee on Geophysics, Instruments and Equipment of the Geology Division of the Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy ... J. Frank Rollins resigned from Geophysical Service Inc. to become a partner in Rayflex Exploration Co. in Dallas. Membership: 1593


The SEG Council met when Denver hosted the convention 26-29 April with L. L. Nettleton, general chairman. A Mining Geophysics symposium was held for the first time at the meeting. New publications: Cumulative Index 1931-47, M. King Hubbert, Editor; and Geophysical Case Histories, Vol. 1, L. L. Nettleton, Special Editor. SEG became one of 12 sponsor societies of the newly formed American Geological Institute with E. A. Eckhardt and L. L. Nettleton serving as representatives. The following sections were chartered: Tulsa Geophysical Society, R. Clare Coffin, President; Dallas Geophysical Society, A. E. McKay, President; Fort Worth Geophysical Society; Geophysical Society of Houston, W. J. Osterhoudt, President; and Pacific Coast Section, Curtis H. Johnson, President. "Geophysical Activity in the U.S. Oil Industry," E. A. Eckhardt, Chairman, was published in December in Geophysics. Student sections were chartered at the University of Tulsa and at Colorado School of Mines. SEG moved into new offices in Tulsa (two rooms) and a secretary for the business manager was hired. New standing committees: Radio Frequency Allocation (changed to "Radio Facilities Committee" in 1949), Distinguished Lectures, and Safety. The first Best Paper Award was to Raymond Maillot for "Fundamental equations of electrical prospecting," which appeared in the October Geophysics.

Personals: Walter E. Heinrichs resigned from the Bureau of Reclamation to join Newmont Mining Corp. in Golden ... AGU's William Bowie Medal presented to J. B. Macelwane, S.J. ... A. P. Crary now with United Geophysical Co. at Awali, Bahrein Island ... Silvain J. Pirson, former professor of geophysics at Penn State, joined Stanolind Oil & Gas Co. as research reservoir engineer ... Roy F. Bennett named chief geophysicist of Sohio Petroleum ... Alfred J. Hermont is the name legally adopted by Alfred J. Herzenberg, Shell Oil Co. ... Edwin D. Gaby is president of new firm, Delta Exploration Co. ... B. B. Weatherby is serving as general chairman of the International Petroleum Exposition's Hall of Science; Daniel Silverman is chairman of the geophysical committee for the Tulsa conference ... C. Hewitt Dix now associate professor of geophysics at Cal Tech ... Louis B. Slichter joined the Institute of Geophysics at U.C.L.A. ... Charles C. Bates appointed member of the Panel on Geographic Environment, Research & Development Board of the U.S. Dept. of National Defense. Membership: 1822


The Annual Meeting was held March 14-17 in St. Louis with Andrew Gilmour as program chairman; 26 papers were presented. Ark La Tex Geophysical Society was chartered March 12 in Shreveport. The Dallas, Fort Worth, Tulsa, and Ark La Tex Geophysical Societies held the first Midwestern Regional Meeting in Dallas, November 17-18; D. Ray Dobyns served as Program Chairman. An updated Index of Wells Shot for Velocity (2nd supplement), B. G. Swan, Special Editor, was published in January Geophysics.

Personals: Norman J. Christie appointed area supervisor of United Geophysical Co. for the Midcontinent and Gulf Coast Division, with headquarters in Tulsa ... J. Brian Eby elected president of the Texas Academy of Science ... Ira H. Cram, former exploration manager for Pure Oil Co., appointed VP and head of exploration for Continental Oil in Ponca City. Membership: 2339