top of page

John Jobe (1911-1954)

Oma Lewis Jobe was born in 1902 in Missouri, along with five brothers. They moved to Sperry, Oklahoma, near Tulsa, after WW I and Oma began gauging oil wells, on horseback. In 1924 he and all of his brothers went to work for the Mid-Continent Torpedo Co. in Tulsa, owned by Ford Alexander of Los Angeles. Mid Continent merged with Western Torpedo Company, Western went bankrupt; all ultimately became Standard Torpedo Company under Alexander's corporate structure with Myron M. Kinley, from Santa Barbara, California as the general manager. Kinley left Alexander in 1926 and with his dad, Karl and brother, Floyd, formed the MM Kinley Company where they too shot nitroglycerin charges, developed various down-hole fishing tools and, in Cromwell, Oklahoma in 1928 shot out an enormous oil well fire using nitro. As for Myron Kinley, the rest is history, as they say.

Several of Jobe brothers worked for Myron in Tulsa. One of Oma's brothers, John invented a form of casing cutter while working for the Mid Continent/Western Company and successfully patented that cutter which was used for many decades thereafter.

In 1936 Floyd Kinley was crushed to death on a rig floor near Goliad, Texas. Myron immediately hired John Jobe and moved him to Houston. John was Myron's right hand man from 1937 t0 1945 when Myron hired, Red Adair, a young hand from Otis Engineering.

Jobe saw the writing on the wall and left Kinley to form his own company; above is the only known advertisement of his company ever made and it was in a 1948 issue of Oil Weekly (World Oil).

In 1952 Jobe was on a fire around the Lake in Venezuela. He became very ill and was flown back to Houston to have an emergency appendectomy. The surgery resulted in him dying of gangrene in 1954 at the age of 43. The casing cutter patent and corresponding royalties provided for his family for years after his death.


bottom of page