Petroleum jelly

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Petroleum jelly

Petroleum jelly,[1] is a common household product sold in chemists (pharmacies). It comes in small flat tins as in the illustration.

Chemically, it is a gel mixture of hydrocarbons.[2] It is used as an ointment to put on skin. It has antiseptic and healing properties.

In origin it is an American product got from oil (petroleum). Its properties were first discovered by native Americans in Pennsylvania 1415–1450.[3][4] Later it was refined by chemist Robert Chesebrough, who patented it in 1872. He opened his first factory in 1870 in Brooklyn using the trade name Vaseline.[5]

References[change | change source]

  1. Also known as petrolatum, soft paraffin, or multi-hydrocarbon
  2. "Petrolatum (white)". inchem.org. International Programme on Chemical Safety and the Commission of the European Communities. March 2002. Retrieved August 5, 2011.
  3. Weatherford, Jack (2010). Indian Givers: how native Americans transformed the world. p. 240. ISBN 9780307717153.
  4. Keoke, Emory Dean; Porterfield, Kay Marie (2003). American Indian contributions to the world: 15,000 Years of inventions and innovations. p. 199. ISBN 978-0816053674.
  5. The history of Vaseline petroleum jelly began in the Pennsylvania oil fields! Drake Well Museum pamphlet, copyright 1996 by Holigan Group Ltd, Dallas, Texas.