Part 1 of the excellent PBS documentary series based on Daniel Yergin’s Pulitzter winning book “The Prize: Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power”. The very long book has an equally long documentary series with eight 52 minute episodes. I thoroughly recommend watching if you would like to understand much of what has gone on in the 20th century. The modern industrialised way of life simply would not be possible without oil and this documentary series explains so much about the economic pecking order of the world today and the power that has come along with it.
The first installment goes back to where the modern oil industry was born, Pennsylvania, USA in 1859. The victor of the gold rush type industry of the day was John D. Rockefeller, the worlds first billionaire and the founder of Standard Oil, the origin of ExxonMobil and Chevron of today. The episode tracks the incredible rise of Standard Oil through his ruthless and legally dubious business practices.
Google video link if you prefer.