Skip to main content

Image / Wilshire Oil Company, Inc., Vernon refinery

Have a question about this item?

Item information. View source record on contributor's website.

Wilshire Oil Company, Inc., Vernon refinery
Alternative Title
Los Angeles Photographers Photo Collection;
Schultheis, Herman
Made accessible through a grant from the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation
Date Created and/or Issued
Circa 1938
Contributing Institution
Los Angeles Public Library
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection
Rights Information
Images available for reproduction and use. Please see the Ordering & Use page at for additional information.
Title supplied by cataloger.; Herman J. Schultheis was born in Aachen, Germany in 1900, and immigrated to the United States in the mid-1920s after obtaining a Ph.D. in mechanical and electrical engineering. He married Ethel Wisloh in 1936, and the pair moved to Los Angeles the following year. He worked in the film industry from the late 1930s to the mid-1940s, most notably on the animated features Fantasia and Pinocchio. His detailed notebook, documenting the special effects for Fantasia, is the subject of a 14-minute short-subject included on the film's DVD. In 1949, he started employment with Librascope as a patent engineer. Schultheis was an avid amateur photographer who traveled the world with his cameras. It was on one of these photographic exhibitions in 1955 that he disappeared in the jungles of Guatemala. His remains were discovered 18 months later. The digitized portion of this collection represents the images Schultheis took of Los Angeles and its surrounding communities after he relocated to the area in 1937.
Three brothers George Alfred and Victor Machris started the Wilshire Oil Company, Inc. in 1915 with one service station. They purchased the old Union Oil refinery known as the Atlas refinery at 28th and Santa Fe in Vernon. This facility acted as a distribution center for their stations as well as the surrounding neighborhood. In 1935 they built a new refinery close to their first well in Santa Fe Springs and subsequently ceased operations at 2455 East 27th Street, Vernon. The refinery was dismantled and today is a row of industrial buildings.
The Wilshire Oil Company refinery in Vernon as seen from Santa Fe. A barrier of sand and a low wall separate the refinery from the street.
1 photographic print :b&w ;11 x 15 cm.
Photographic prints
Herman J Schultheis Collection; Los Angeles Photographers Collection;
N-008-484 8x10
Wilshire Oil Company, Inc
Petroleum refineries--California--Vernon
Petroleum industry and trade--California--Vernon
Lost architecture--California--Vernon
Vernon (Calif.)
Schultheis Collection photographs

About the collections in Calisphere

Learn more about the collections in Calisphere. View our statement on digital primary resources.

Copyright, permissions, and use

If you're wondering about permissions and what you can do with this item, a good starting point is the "rights information" on this page. See our terms of use for more tips.

Share your story

Has Calisphere helped you advance your research, complete a project, or find something meaningful? We'd love to hear about it; please send us a message.

Explore related content on Calisphere: