History of Avon, California
From: The History of Contra Costa County, California
Edited by: F. J. Hulaniski
The Elms Publishing Co., Inc.
Berkeley, California 1917


THE Associated Oil Company was incorporated October 5, 1901, with a capitalization of forty million dollars, and consisted of some thirty five oil companies, controlling about three fourths of the Kern River and McKittrick oil fields.

The company's policy of expansion soon after brought it into control of the Amalgamated and the West Coast oil companies and many other valuable holdings in the various fields. In 1905 the company purchased the property of the National Oil Transportation Company, and thereby secured pipe line facilities from the Coalinga field to tidewater at Monterey, and from the Santa Maria field to its refinery at Gaviota, Santa Barbara County. In 1906 the Associated Oil Company completed its first eight inch pipe line from the San Joaquin field to Port Costa, and shortly thereafter, this line being inadequate, another eight inch line was built, giving a total capacity of about fifty thousand barrels a day. In 1906 the company constructed an eight inch pipe line from the Santa Maria field to its refinery at Gaviota, a distance of about thirty five miles.

In 1911 the Associated Oil Company decided to erect a refinery on San Francisco Bay, and for this purpose purchased a six hundred and twenty acre site at Avon, Contra Costa County. This refinery, although not as large as some other refineries in the United States, is of the latest design. It was completed and put in operation in August, 1913, at that time having a capacity of about ten thousand barrels of crude oil a day. The high quality of its products was immediately recognized by the trade, and as a result almost continuous additions have been made, until at the present time this plant is capable of handling twenty five thousand barrels of crude oil a day. This refinery has been pronounced by experts as one of the most modem and complete in the United States. The location of Avon refinery is ideal, having deep water shipping facilities and being traversed by both the Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railroads. The company's two eight inch pipe lines from the valley oil fields serve as a source of supply.

The Associated Oil Company has established some thirty five distributing stations and about twenty five service stations in the principal cities of California, as well as stations in Oregon, Washington, and Nevada. It has a fleet of eight oil tankers, having a combined capacity of about three hundred thousand barrels; also, necessary tugs, barges, and tank cars.

It is estimated that the company has invested over two and a half million dollars in Contra Costa County, and furnishes employment to several hundred men. During the year 1916 the company expended over half a million dollars in improvements at its Avon refinery alone.

The refinery capacities of the Associated refineries at Los Angeles and Gaviota have also been increased in order to take care of market demands. This company is pursuing a policy of increasing its landholdings, and during the last year made heavy investments in oil lands and developments.

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