Michigan's first recorded oil field was discovered In 1886. The Port Huron Field in St. Clair County produced local use petroleum from the Dundee at about 575 feet. The last of the field's wells were plugged in 1921.
The August, 1925 discovery of the Saginaw field at Deindorfer woods in the city of Saginaw is the accepted entry of Michigan into the ranks of petroleum producing states. Limited production still comes from the field.
In 1976 the Michigan Oil and Gas Association, The Michigan United Conservation Clubs and others spearheaded the creation of the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund, which uses royalties and lease bonuses from oil and gas production from State-owned mineral rights to aquire and improve public recreation lands.
Through 2008, the M.N.R.T.F. Board has approved over 1,500 such projects throughout Michigan's 83 counties totaling over $700 million.