In 1890, pharmacist Lunsford Richardson, took over the retail drug business of his brother-in-law, Dr. John Vick. Richardson began making “Vicks Family Remedies”, which included an ointment marketed as “Croup and Pneumonia Salve”.
This ointment would later become known to us as Vicks Vaporub as early as 1912.
The flu epidemic of 1918 increased the sales of Vaporub from $900,000 to more than $2 million in less than a year. By 1931, the company decided to expand its product line and began making cough drops.
Today, Vicks manufactures a wide range of cough and cold remedies, including Nyquil, Dayquil, Formula 44 cough syrup, and more.
Vicks was acquired by Procter and Gamble in 1985.
Vicks Vaporub has been a staple in most American households for more than a century. Some people have recently questioned if it ever truly expires after someone was found using a container that was 34 years old.
VapoRub has been known to have many uses other than what it was intended for. One woman found a clever way to deter foxes from stealing newspapers.
Vicks maintains a corporate office in South Fork, Pennsylvania.