- Main contributors
Center for Public History, University of Houston; University of Houston Libraries, University of Houston
This is an oral history interview with Huey Kleinpeter conducted as part of the Houston History Project. Huey Kleinpeter was born in 1924 and grew up down on the bayou, six miles out of Plaquemine. His father rambled out West in the oilfields a bit, before serving during World War One, and then making a career as a river pilot. Starting in high school, he worked summers on boats (e.g., towing timber in the Atchafalaya swamp) to buy school clothing. His two older brothers dropped out of school early to go work on the river, but he stayed in school and graduated in 1942. After graduating, he registered to go to Louisiana State University (LSU) to become a civil engineer, but received his draft notice. While waiting to be officially drafted, he worked as a timekeeper in Kansas City Bridge Company's Plaquemine yard. He ended up serving in the Navy on the USS Detroit in the Pacific. He went back to working on the boats with his father when he returned in 1946, but after finding out he could not get his pilot's license because of his eyesight, he decided to change trades. He went to work again for Kansas City Bridge Company, where he had various jobs including assistant payroll master and ironworker, during that time he also worked on the Big Inch Pipeline. After six or so years with them, he was laid off, and in 1956 he went to work for an independent producer, Temple [Hall Grove?], as a gauger in the Choctaw Field. He also worked as a roustabout for a time, but then decided to quit and returned to construction work as a welder. After leaving construction work, he went to work for a company (that was later bought out by Midland Enterprises) for about 11 years as a shipyard captain and port captain. At the age of 55, he went to work for BSF in general maintenance and retired from them 11 years later in 1990. The first half of the interview consists of them looking through pictures mostly from offshore construction work he did during the 1950s and 1960s. Throughout the interview he describes the various jobs he has had related and not related to the oil industry. Interviewers: Steven Wiltz and David DiTucci, University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Energy development; Petroleum industry and trade; Kleinpeter, Huey
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University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
Houston History Archives
Oral Histories from the Houston History Project
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Preservation Location: ark:/84475/pm4641mj35g
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This item is accessible by: the public.