Dunbar enjoyed a short period of oil exploration during two different time periods - first in the late 1920's/early 1930's and second in the mid 1950's. Wells were drilled on the Shannon place, Simmons botton on the Keeton farm and the Haywood Cordle place. The intersection of Brooksie Thompson Road and Highway 114 was know as "Oil Well" for many years. The various drilling projects drew a lot of local attention and generated many stories of oil discoveries and "capped" wells. The drilled wells were supposedly filled with horse shoes to prevent anyone else from drilling in the same locations. The drilling crews often left under cover of darkness which only fueled the rumors of unannounced oil discoveries. There are no documented discoveries of oil in the Dunbar Community.
The letter below written July 3, 1940 from J. D. Canady to Old Dunbar Land Owners provides some insight into the relationship between the oil developers and the land owners during this time frame. Thanks to Paul Montgomery and Don Keeton for making this letter available.
If you have any information on the oil wells drilled near Dunbar, please contact me.