Radium Ore Company's Revigator

August 01, 2013
by Sean Ruck, Contributing Editor
The picture and description appear courtesy of Dr. M. Donald Blaufox, M.D., Ph.D, from his website: www.mohma.org.

Each month we visit Dr. Blaufox’s Museum of Historical Medical Artifacts to take a look back at the medical equipment that cleared the way for what patients encounter in doctors’ offices and operating rooms of today. Some equipment may be recognizable, while other inventions featured here have since become obsolete or have had their usefulness discredited.

Category: Radionuclides
Estimated Date: 1912
Manufacturer: Radium Ore Co.
Description: An earthenware crock, which is shaped with a narrow lid and wide bottom. The crock has a spigot with imprinted directions on the side telling the user to drink frequently to gain the benefits of the radioactivity. The label reads “RevigatorRadium Ore, Patented 7/16/12, Trademark The Radium Ore Revigator Company, 260 California Street, San Francisco, California.

The instructions on the jar read, “Fill jar every night, use hydrant or any good water, drink freely when thirsty upon arising, and retiring, average 6 or more glasses daily, scrub with stiff brush and scald monthly.”

The radiation reading inside of this stoneware jug was 5.2 mR per hour and the outside the reading was about 1 to 2 mR per hour. The Revigator originally contained a cone of radioactive ore, which was placed in the crock. The water then would sit with it, absorb the emitted radon and was to be drunk on a regular basis for its curative properties.