In the recent video post we made about Wilbur Hot Spring, I showed a spring that appears to be bringing up petroleum oil!
No one there was able to explain this to me, and I was looking for some confirmation....
Special thanks to Lin for getting me this information! It is an old document describing the Wilbur Spring and surrounding area. The bottom of the first paragraph makes reference to "Oil Spring" which tastes of petroleum! That gives a bit of confirmation.
Then there was also this document which mentions springs of petroleum coming up in the area...
Now to see if the Balneologists know of any theraputic benefit to this naturally occuring compound! Compounds like Radon and Arsenic, which are known to be poisonous are considered to have beneficial medicinal action in the art and science of balneotherapy. Dose is everything!
My first reaction to seeing petroleum in the spring was notable concern. As I began to contemplate this, I realized i didn't have a reference point for naturally occurring "rock oil".
If anyone finds a reference or more information on this, please leave it as a comment below!!
Post Script! It is now April 5th, 2010, and this was just received from Wilbur HotSprings!
Dear Friends: Some of you have expressed interest in the black tar like substance that Daniel Vitalis showed in his excellent, and, for me, emotionally moving, 2 movie UTube series on Wilbur Hot Springs. Here is some information on that healing smelly substance. A black, tar like, material can be seen in the mud around the Wilbur Hot Springs source springs. You cannot see this black material in the hot water since it is dissolved; however, you can smell a very mild petroleum like odor in Wilbur's medicinal mineral water along with the smell of sulfur, a well known, and established, anti bacterial agent. I have witnessed dramatic reductions in the symptoms of Psoriasis at Wilbur Hot Springs. My research led me to the following article from the renowned Mayo Clinic. Treatments and drugs By Mayo Clinic staff <
> Psoriasis treatments aim to: - Interrupt the cycle that causes an increased production of skin cells, thereby reducing inflammation and plaque formation. - Remove scale and smooth the skin, which is particularly true of topical treatments that you apply to your skin. *Topical treatments* Used alone, creams and ointments that you apply to your skin can effectively treat mild to moderate psoriasis. - *Coal tar. A thick, black byproduct of the manufacture of petroleum products and coal, coal tar is probably the oldest treatment for psoriasis. It reduces scaling, itching and inflammation. Exactly how it works isn't known. Coal tar has few known side effects, but it's messy, stains clothing and bedding, and has a strong odor. Coal tar is available in over-the-counter shampoos, creams and oils.* In addition, Daniel Vitalis personally assimilated the depth of the respectful and non cult atmosphere that we have created at Wilbur. He is to be commended, and thanked, for his making Wilbur a subject of his professional, guerrilla, video journalism. Richard Richard Louis Miller, M.A., Ph.D. Wilbur Caretaker in Chief since 1972