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Asphaltum, Indiana facts for kids

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Asphaltum
Country United States
State Indiana
County Jasper
Township Gillam
Elevation
689 ft (210 m)
ZIP code
46392
FIPS code 18-02512
GNIS feature ID 430316

Asphaltum was an unincorporated community in Gillam Township, Jasper County, Indiana.

Geography

Asphaltum is located at 41°06′01″N 86°59′53″W / 41.10028°N 86.99806°W / 41.10028; -86.99806, approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) north and 6 miles (9.7 km) west of Medaryville.

History

AsphaltumRefinery
Asphaltum Refinery ca 1901

Asphaltum was platted by B. F. Rouse in 1901 at the peak of an oil boom in the area. An oil refinery was built by the American Lubricating and Refining Company and operated for a short time. The oil wells which led to the town's creation were fed by shallow deposits that soon failed to yield after hundreds of wells were put down in the area. The crude oil given up by these wells was sulphurous and of low quality.

A post office opened at Asphaltum in 1901, and closed in 1904.

There is no visible sign of the town's existence today, although local lore has it that there are some abandoned tanks behind a house in the vicinity, left after one of the periodic attempts by speculators to revitalize the field. There is a small-gauge oil well which once had a short stone base, in the yard of a house which sits within the official bounds of the former town site.

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