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August 10, 2018

Prospect businessman resurrects old-time black fly repellent

An angler, hunter and businessman from Prospect has resurrected Ole Time Woodsman, a black fly and mosquito repellent going back to the 1880s.

The Bangor Daily News reported that Ken "Skip" Theobald III purchased the company from his father and worked with the Environmental Protection Agency in Maine to get it back on the market after a two-year hiatus.

Theobald had to pull it from shelves in 2016 due to labeling considerations. It's now available for purchase online and he's focusing on getting it back on the shelves of Maine fly fishing shops and outfitters by next year.

"It's a mixture of pine tar, petroleum distillates — like mineral oil and stuff like that — and essential oils," Theobald told the newspaper.

The product's website says: "While fishing in Maine in 1910, Obie Sherer and his fishing buddy, Dr. Donald Adams decided they needed to come up with something to make spring fishing in the Maine wilderness a little more enjoyable. Working from an old 1882 recipe, they mixed up a batch of Fly Dope. On their next trip to Maine, a logging crew spotted Obie fishing peacefully. Obie told the foreman all about his Fly Dope and agreed to make a batch for the company. When the first batch was used up, the woods crews clamored for more. As a result, Obie decided to go into business and named his new product 'Ole Time Woodsman' in honor of his first customers."

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