Peterson's Ointment (Free Sample)

Peterson's Ointment (Free Sample)

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Usage conditions apply
The indications or uses for this product as provided by the manufacturer are:
Cures eczema, bleeding and itching piles, and old sores, burns, sore nipples, salt rheum, tired and tender feet, corns, catarrh, chafing
Currently not on view
Object Name
otc preparation
Other Terms
date made
ca 1925
Peterson Brothers
place made
United States: New York, Buffalo
Physical Description
tin (container material)
overall: 3/8 in x 1 1/4 in;.9525 cm x 3.175 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Rubs, Liniments & Ointments
Skin & Dermatology Drugs
Foot Products
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Beauty and Hygiene Products: Cure-alls
Health & Medicine
Balm of America
Beauty and Health
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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This product originated in Buffalo, NY, I am not sure when it sold to a California but now distributed by Oakhurst Company Levittown, NY. I noticed the Carbolic Acid was replaced by Phenol 2.5%. I gave this ointment to a girl with severe sunburn and she definitely would have blistered were it not for this ointment. Turned her skin a dark tan but no side effects. This was the original formula I had at the time. Now I have the one with the Phenol 2.5% but seems to work good enough. In viewing the prices today, way too much and when I purchased this 3oz can in was $17.00 which I felt at that time too much.
I grew up using Peterson's Ointment (born in 1963). It is the product my Mom grew up using (born in 1938). When it started disappearing from stores in the 1980's, we would go into pharmacies when on road trips or vacations just to see if they still carried it, and buy a few if they did. In the last couple years, the formula was changed. It is no longer the miracle ointment to pull out a wood sliver overnight or treat a skin boil with a few days of bandaging. I miss the old product.
I completely agree. The formula is NOT the same. The color of the product was slightly beige, if not gray. It is now thick, and not as THICK, but creamier. The first time I saw Peterson's used in 1989, a softball player had slid into a base, and had a scrape with sand imbedded. Peterson's was slapped on, and gauze wrapped around it. 4 hours later, the gauze unwound; the gauze was full of the sand the ointment had pulled out of the wound. I ordered it a couple weeks ago. A large can. It doesn't smell as strongly of camphor or eucalyptus. It is too thin. I am disappointed.
When I was a little girl my Dr Peterson peddled his ointment through his practice. He said it was a mighty cure all to just about anything that ailed you.
Petersons Ointment is still sold today... Has the formula or ingredients changed much since 1925?
"I do not know about since 1925, but I know the formula has been watered down since the 1980's. When I first started using it, it worked for three days, without reapplying. In the early 2000's, I noticed I had to reapply 3 times a day. Despite the formula being weaker, it has tripled in price since the 1980's and it is owned by a different company. Having said that, it is still a hundred times more effective than Preparation H."

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