Better known as “The Tank Farm”, the Monaca Air Force Petroleum Oil and Lubricant Retail Distribution Facility (MAFPOL) was constructed by the Department of Defense in the 1940s. It was located on 305 acres of land in Potter Township, along Raccoon Creek. The Tank Farm was used to store more than 10.4 million gallons of high octane gasoline, or aviation fuel, underground during World War II. The top-secret storage area was camouflaged to look like a farm to hide the fuel tanks with the purpose of preventing the site from becoming a bomb target during the war.

Unearthing a Fuel Tank

          MAFPOL consisted of six 1.74 million-gallon fuel tanks, two gasoline-blending plants, two valve houses, two booster pump houses, a fire station and guard house, a wash house for workers with an electrical generating plant, storage sheds, a water pumping station, and a pistol and rifle range. The Tank Farm also had an underground pipeline that ran under Raccoon Creek to Route 18 where it branched off to a barge unloading station by the Ohio River (property now owned by NOVA Chemicals) and to a truck and rail unloading station near Horsehead Corporation’s zinc plant.

Tank Farm and Pipeline Map

          In August of 1941, before the United States entered World War II, the federal government bought the property from William R. Jeffreys and his wife, who bought the property from the Braden family in 1930. The federal government used the area as a storage site for aviation fuel and later sold the property as a surplus to Beaver County in 1963. Beaver County then sold the property to St. Joe Lead Company, which later became Zinc Corporation of America. The property of 305 acres was subdivided, leaving the tank farm with six fuel tanks and several buildings remaining on a 63.42 acre parcel at the intersection of Mowry Road and Raccoon Creek Road. Of the buildings left on the site, two are blending plants that were disguised to resemble barns and one is the building that was the stone wash house and electrical generating plant. On July 20, 2007, Potter Township took the 63.42 acre parcel by eminent domain from the bankrupt Zinc Corp. of America.


Old Blending Plant disguised as a Barn