Digboi as an oil town
It is said that the town gets its name from the phrase "dig-boy-dig," which is what the English and Canadian miners told the labourers as they dug for crude oil. It is said that Canadians first noticed oil on the feet of elephants. That's how oil was discovered here. The town's history begins in 1867 when a small group of men from the Assam Railway and Trading Co. found their elephants' legs soaked in black mud, that smelled somewhat like oil. The men began exploring more, and in 1889, the English started a small oil installation. India (and Asia) obtained its first refinery in Digboi in the year 1901. Assam Oil Company was formed in 1899 to look after the running of the oil business in this area. The Digboi oil field produced close to 7,000 barrels per day (1,100 m3/d) of crude oil at its peak, which was during World War II. The field was pushed to produce the maximum amount of oil with little regard to reservoir management; as a result, production started to drop almost immediately after the war. The current production from the Digboi fields is about 240 barrels per day (38 m3/d). Over 1,000 wells have been drilled at Digboi – the first well in 1889 had stuck oil at 178 feet (54 m). In 1989, the Department of Posts, India came out with a stamp commemorating 100 years of the Digboi fields.
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