History of BP | About BP | BP Global

History of BP

The BP story, from first oil to tomorrow’s energies

Our history is full of discoveries, starting in 1908 with oil found in a rugged part of Persia after a long and difficult search. Since then, discoveries large and small (and sometimes just in the nick of time) have fuelled our progress.

In our story, you may make a few discoveries of your own. Winston Churchill gives a rousing speech. The Smurfs cause a traffic jam. Our employees help construct a giant spool, build the world’s largest deepwater pipeline and bring solar power to remote villages in the Philippines.

Where did they find the energy? Perhaps we should start at the beginning.

BP founder William D Arcy

1901-1908

An uncertain beginning

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An early geologist

1909-1924

From struggle to success

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A man guarding a pipeline

1925-1945

Progress amid turmoil

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Vehicles in a traffic jam

1946-1970

Big changes, new prospects

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A north sea oil rig with a dramtic sky background

1971-1999

Finding a new momentum

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A BP branded glass building

2000 & Beyond

Looking ahead

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