IRAN: Troubled Oil

In 1901, William Knox D'Arcy, an adventurous Englishman who had amassed a fortune in the Australian gold fields, scented a new bonanza. He paid Iran's Shah $20,000 for a 60-year monopoly on oil production in five-sixths of Iran, promised him an additional 16% of the profits. Seven years later, D'Arcy's prospectors brought in a gusher. In 1909, the Anglo-Persian Oil Co. (renamed Anglo-Iranian in 1935) was founded, has been spouting profits ever since. It built the world's largest refinery at Abadan, became a top-ranking crude-oil producer. It also fell more & more into disfavor with the Iranian government. By...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!