Tulsa, Oklahoma: Golden Driller: Titanic Oil Man
Tulsa State Fairground
- 4145 E. 21st St. S., Tulsa, OK
- On the Tulsa State Fairground, at the corner of E 21st St. S. and S. Pittsburg Ave.In front of the International Petroleum Exhibition Building on the Tulsa Fairgrounds. I-244 exits 9 or 10. Drive south to E. 21st St. S., then turn east (from 9) or west (from 10). On the north side of E. 21st St. S.
- RA Rates:
- Major Fun
One of the tallest statues in America, the Golden Driller has survived tornadoes and turbulent oil markets. Roadsideamerica.com Report... [05/03/2008]
Visitor Tips and News About Golden Driller: Titanic Oil Man
It has been told to us for generations: My Great Uncle Doc was the model for the statue. Several other great uncles and Doc were the ones that moved the statue to its current location. Having been a Tulsa citizen for almost 50 years, I've seen repairs done over the years. I hope to find a picture to see if there is a resemblance.[Dottie Randell Norton, 12/30/2010]
Uncle Doc, you will not be forgotten!
The Golden Driller - that huge mustard yellow guy that stands over the Tulsa Fairgrounds...was originally not going to be a "guy" at all.
My grandmother told me the story of how my Great-Aunt Margree posed for the first statue - in the nude, no less, and holding up a flaming torch to represent the "oil" part. She was only 18 or so at the time, and was chosen for her beauty (obviously) but also because she had so many younger siblings that she looked after, so her arms were so strong from carrying them around all day that she didn't get tired holding that torch up for hours on end while the artist made a miniature sculpture.
Ultimately, however, the city went with the Golden Driller guy instead, which is probably a good thing. Although it would be fun to take people there and say "See that huge naked chick? That's my great aunt!"[Heather, 03/01/2006]
My great-grandfather, Ralph Seegren I, was the son of a prostitute, born in Sweden. She left him in an orphanage as a young boy. At age 14, he climbed the fence and ran away. He found his mother on a street corner, talking with a customer. When he approached her, she pretended not to know who he was. He went to the boat docks and got a job working on a ship bound for America. There he met my great-grandmother, Lillian Mae Hillblom, who had also immigrated from Sweden. She was one of eleven children -- she and her sister had drawn the longest straws, allowing them to come to the USA and work as indentured servants for two years, in exchange for their boat passage. Ralph and Lillian met in Kansas, then settled in Tulsa, OK, where he established what became the largest paint contracting company in the city. His son, my grandfather, Ralph "Bud" Seegren II was the first person to paint the Golden Driller.[September Brown, 09/19/2005]
Feb. 2006: Carolyn Myers takes issue with this account: "September Brown states her grandfather, Ralph "Bud" Seegren was one of the first to paint the Golden Driller. That is quite a statement, even though it's false. My grandfather, Roger Seegren (Bud's brother) was actually the one who did the painting."
The giant Tulsa Oil Man Statue now has a little friend at his feet: the Roustabird. It appears to be a statue of a filthy oil drilling penguin in overalls and a hard hat (like his giant master).[Todd Kent, 08/30/2003]
Tipster David Carlson writes that "The�penguin in front of the Tulsa, OK, Golden Driller is one of Tulsa's�"Penguins on Parade," a local art project to raise funds for the Tulsa Zoo's new penguin habitat."