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Digboi- the forefather of oil refinery

Introduction of Digboi
Digboi is a popular industrial town located in Tinsukia district in the north-eastern part of Assam. Digboi is famous for crude oil as there are oil refineries from a very old period, right from the time of British rule. It is indeed the oldest oil drilled and also the first in Asia. Mr. Good enough, who was an employee of McKillop, Stewart & Co.; was the key person to start a systematic procedure of drilling oil in the year 1866, the location was at Nahorpung, which is about 48 kms from the town of Digboi.

History of Digboi
The history of Digboi is very interesting. However the prominence of Digboi as an oil refinery station came during the period of British rule. It was during 1901 the British engineers first identified the availability of crude oil in abundance in this region. This resulted in the establishment of oil refineries where significant number of British professionals got employed for Assam Oil Company till the time of Indian independence in 1947. Later Assam Oil Company was named as Indian Oil Corporation as it is now. The establishment of oil refinery is also supported with good infrastructure and bungalows are provided to the employees which is one unique feature of Digboi.

A story behind the name" Digboi"
There is one interesting story behind the name of Digboi. It was during the period of 1867, a group of worker from Assam Railway and Trading Co. found one elephants leg is completely soaked in black mud which felt something like oil. It was during this time that Mr. W Lake shouted “Dig boy Dig” which eventually gave the name Digboi. However this story does not have any strong foundation as it was a word-of-mouth. The refinery of Digboi which is currently operated under the supervision of Indian Oil is by far the oldest refinery in the world.
Upon exploring the Britishers eventually found the vast natural resource of petroleum buried under this land. Thus, it became a hub of petroleum oil refinery within a very short span of time. 
Digboi is also famous for establishment of various renowned educational institutions. The Digboi College established in 1965 was one of the primary institutions for higher education during that time. Later a college specifically for women, Digboi Mahila mahavidyalaya was established in 1981 to promote unification of education for both sexes.

Places of visit in Digboi
Digboi is mainly an industrial town which is still having the culture of Britishers, prevalent among the local people.

Digboi Golf course:  The British rule had established an eighteen holes golf club which is a part of the industry’s club culture. It also has residential complex built in Italian style which essentially promote tourism in Assam. The golf course in Digboi is one of the most visited in the country.

Digboi Centenary Museum: The Digboi Centenary Museum is a good place to know more about the town and its history.

Dibru Saikhowa National Park: The Dibru Saikhowa National Park is approximately 50 kms from Digboi and has a vast collection of endangered species.

Various picnic spots like “margherita” are also there. The oldest oil refinery is also an interesting place to visit.


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