Ike Morris Receives the 2011 Colonel Edwin L. Drake Legendary Oilman Award

At the Honors and Awards Banquet of the 2011 Symposium of the Petroleum History Institute (PHI) this past Friday evening, June 24, 2011, in Marietta, OH, I.L. “Ike” Morris, founder and CEO of Waco Oil and Gas Company, Inc. received PHI’s highest and most prestigious recognition and award, “The Colonel Edwin L. Drake Legendary Oilman Award” in recognition of his lifetime achievements in, and contributions to, the petroleum industry, his state, country and society.

The PHI Drake Award is named in honor and commemoration of Colonel Edwin L. Drake’s momentous discovery of oil on August 27, 1859 along the bank of Oil Creek near Titusville, PA, that is generally conceded by most historians to have been the birth of the modern oil and gas industry that has grown from that humble beginning into its current stature as a giant, global energy industry upon which all of our modern society depends.


Ike Morris was born in Oklahoma, grew up in southeastern Illinois and moved to his now adopted home in 1962 in West Virginia. Morris’ father was in the oil and gas business, so one might say Ike Morris was born with “oil in his veins”.

Following an oil boom that was going in West Virginia in 1962, Morris first established an oil service company in Gilmer County, WV, his newly adopted home, and over the years continued to expand his operations to include all phases of the oil and natural gas business including land leasing, exploration, oil and gas production, pipeline construction, etc.

Over the past nearly 5 decades, Ike Morris has drilled and or operated 2000 oil and gas wells in West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio.

Currently he operates about 800 wells in Harrison, Marion and Doddridge counties in West Virginia and is very active in the current Marcellus shale gas play drilling a new shale gas well every 2 to 3 weeks.

West Virginia has been good to Ike Morris, as he always concedes.

He met his wife Sue (a Gilmer County girl) here and by hard work, keen business acumen, and an innate “nose for oil and gas”, he has made a lot of well-earned money here.

However, that being said, Ike Morris and his wife Sue are as well known for their philanthropy as their success in the oil and gas business.

They have contributed millions of dollars to Glenville State College and numerous other charitable enterprises.

Ike to this day, despite his fame and fortune, remains an unpretentious “man of the people” and often stops in a small diner in Glenville for breakfast and buys breakfast for all of the other patrons who happen to be dining there that morning.

For all of these reasons, and far too many more to recite in the space available for this news release, l. L. “Ike” Morris, richly deserves designation as a PHI “Legendary Oilman” and the Petroleum History Institute takes great pride and pleasure in him joining the ranks of the distinguished “Colonel Edwin L. Drake Legendary Oilmen” that have preceded him.


What a wonderful tribute to a wonderful entrepreneur and business man. Ike’s humanitarian contributions to Gilmer County are countless, and for this, also, he should be recognized and honored. Thank God he chose Gilmer County as his adopted home.  Thanks, Ike, and congratulations on this well deserved honor.

Comment by Jeane Kennedy  on  09.15.2011

But, what about the people who settled in Gilmer County in the 1800’s and supported the county all that time through property taxes, and whose families lived in the area before the civil war?

Recently, property that had been a family since the 1800’s was pulled from the land books, and used to manipulate a court case. So, I guess it is JUST OK to dishonor and commit crimes against the PROPERTY OWNERS and long established families under IKE’s watch, I mean… isn’t he calling the shots? Isn’t Ike the reason the Sheriff refuses to investigate crimes like those mentioned above?

Didn’t one of your family members have something to do with stealing a few hundred thousand of my families funds lost to court costs and lost wages and lawyers expenses over knowingly bringing a false case, so your man “IKE” could have all of his dudes steal all they could from my family?

Hey Thanks Jeane, Good lookin out!

Would we have more rights if this was our adopted home?

Comment by Concerned Human Being  on  09.15.2011
Page 1 of 1 pages
Commenting is not available in this section entry.

<< Back to Home Page

Copyright MMVIII-MMXV The Gilmer Free Press. All Rights Reserved