Friday, November 9, 2007

Crude Oil’s History

Some of the first instances of civilizations’ use of crude oil were for medicinal benefits. Ancient Persians, along with 10th century Sumatrans and pre-Columbian Indians, all shared a belief in the healing powers of the liquid that seeped generously from the earth. The famous explorer and diplomat, Marco Polo wrote of its use in the Caspian Sea region to treat camels experiencing symptoms of mange. Oil was actually exported from Venezuela in 1539 to be used as a treatment for gout for Holy Roman emperor Charles V.

In Mesopotamia, a form of oil, called bitumen, a naturally occurring petroleum substance similar to asphalt, was used by many warriors as a means of attaching handles and blades to their weapons. Even in one of history’s most honored pieces of literature, the Bible, the character of Noah, famous for his large vessel which shuttled two of every species to safety during the “great flood”, assembled his ship much in the same way other ship builders were at the time. He used bitumen, also called pitch, as a sort of glue to hold the boards together in a watertight manner to give his large transport ship added buoyancy and security in the ever-rising waters. Another Biblical story tells of a tower (the tower of Babel) built to the sky, challenging their god, assembled with bitumen used as mortar between the stones and brick that made up the skyscraping tower. Ancient Egyptians used this unrefined form of crude oil as the mortar for their pyramids, as well as using the liquid in their famed embalming process for their dead. Even far away, in North America, the Senecas and Iroquois are known to have used crude oil for body paint and ceremonial fires.

Crude oil, the form petroleum has straight from the ground has had so many uses over the years, and, though it is usually thought of as “black gold’, naturally occurs in many varieties of color, specific to the particular region it resides in. In Southwestern Illinois, the oil exhibits this stereotypically pitch color, but it also has a hint of a purple hue deep within. In Northeastern Utah, the oil appears orange, a reddish-yellowish color similar to marmalade. In the Panhandle Region of Texas, oil takes on one of the most attractive colors yet; it seeps from the ground assuming the color of the richest yellow, appearing as a creamy gold liquid similar to butter simmering in a saucepan. While oil appears in many different colors and thicknesses naturally, companies such as Triple Diamond Energy Corp refine it to purer forms, and its color changes to the clear color most familiar to motorists today.

About the Author: Bob Jent is the president of Triple Diamond Energy Corp. Triple Diamond Energy specializes in acquiring the highest quality prime oil and gas properties. For more information, visit

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