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Royalite Oil Company Ltd. fonds

1911-1981, predominant 1922-1968

Physical Description:
33 m of textual records. -- 50 photographs. -- 9 film reels

In 1921 Imperial Oil acquired Calgary Petroleum Products and reorganized it as Royalite Oil Company. Royalite drilled its first well that same year and made its first major discovery in 1924 when Royalite No. 4 struck gas. Natural gas was an important part of Royalite's business and during this period it controlled the wells in Turner Valley. The company also acquired several petroleum companies: Sterling Pacific Oil Company, Mayland Oil Company, and Southern Lowery Oils Ltd. In 1939 the company's pipeline was segregated to be operated by a wholly-owned subsidiary, Valley Pipe Line Ltd. Another subsidiary was Madison Natural Gas Company. In 1949 Imperial sold its interest in Royalite to Dominion Securities. Under the auspices of Dominion, Royalite undertook an agressive expansion program. In 1949 it purchased the rights to the Redwater field from the Alberta government. It bought and built refineries and in 1953 opened the first service stations. In 1954 Royalite took over Hi-Way Refineries. By 1958 when Charles Hay (Hi-Way's founder) became president, Royalite was a fully integrated oil company with production, transportation, refining and marketing facilities in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba as well as Alberta. Wholly-owned subsidiaries included Royalite Products Ltd. (Coleville), Prince Albert Refineries, Royalite Hi-Way, and Mid-Saskatchewan Pipe Lines. Partially-owned subsidiaries were Trans Mountain Oil Pipeline Company and Top-Alta Gas and Oil Company. Royalite's expansion program continued until 1962 when it was bought by British American Oil. In 1964 the marketing operations of British American's four affiliated companies in western Canada: Anglo-American, Great West, Sanford, and Western, were consolidated into a new company, Purity 99 Oil Company Ltd. Marketing functions were performed by Purity with service functions handled by Royalite. In 1965 Purity's assets were sold to Royalite which entered into a management agreement with Anglo-American, resulting in Royalite operating a combined marketing operation. At the same time, Anglo's Brandon Refinery and Royalite's exploration, production, pipeline and refinery operations were turned over to British American. In 1969 Royalite amalgamated with British American and Shawinigan Chemicals under the name Gulf Oil Canada Ltd.

Custodial History:
The scrapbooks (M-6403) were salvaged by Mike Erychuk when Royalite was contemplating their disposal, and subsequently donated to Glenbow. Western Decalta found Royalite records in its Turner Valley refinery which had originally belonged to Royalite, and gave them to the Turner Valley Oilfield Society in 1984. The TVOS immediately turned them over to Glenbow.

Scope and Content:
The fonds consists of minutes (1922-1969), bylaws, financial records, correspondence and shareholders records, general business files, drilling and production reports for Turner Valley (1936-1970), scrapbooks (1948-1953), and the lease on Dingman well property (1911). Includes some records of Director Royalties Ltd., Commonwealth Petroleum, Henderson Thriftway Petroleum Ltd., Mid-West Petroleum Products Co., and Alberta Hi-Way Refineries.

Source of Acquisition:
Gifts of Gulf Canada Ltd., Turner Valley Oilfield Society, Mike Erychuk, A.L. Bissillion, ConocoPhillips, Alberta Community Development, and David Finch, 1965-2011.

The material is in English.

Minutes, land and legal records, and Turner Valley reports are restricted until microfilming due to their fragile condition.

Finding Aids:
Inventory available. Please consult before requesting material.

View finding aid / scanned documents:

Call Numbers:
(M=manuscript; N&P=photos; R=sound recordings; S=slides; F=films)
M-6891, M-9017, M-9158, M-9325, M-9479, NA-1179, PA-3636, PB-909, PE-196, F-187

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