The Tumultuous Sixties
Two large caverns, for propane and butane storage, were dug into the limestone over 400 feet below the surface on refinery property; they continue to be in service. The first computer, an IBM 650, was installed in a dedicated air conditioned room in the Main Office basement. The room later became the first home of the History Museum. The longest – and to date, last – strike occurred. A third catalytic reformer unit, CR-3, was built and is still operating. A large new Alkylation Unit replaced the previous units and it is also still operating. Then a major expansion of WRR began with the construction and startup of Distilling Unit no. 2, which replaced three older distillation units and could process “sour” crude oils. The first tender of crude oil arrived from Louisiana via the 40 inch diameter Capline, the “largest pipeline in the free world.” WRR celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1968 with a “Family Day” event including food, entertainment, and refinery tours. Refinery capacity that year was 200,000 barrels per day.
Clark Oil and Refining Corporation purchased the Hartford Refinery from Sinclair.