Linoleum was first available in the 19th century. It is made of linseed oil, wood flour, cork, and sometimes ground limestone or other stone additives. Bonded together with dehydrated linseed oil. A pattern could be pressed into the surface and color variations made from natural additives.
Vinyl came into being shortly after World War II as a more economical alternative to linoleum. Since it is basically a plastic product, it is made primarily of processed petroleum. The housing boom of the late 40’s and 50’s established vinyl flooring as a standard.
With the recent consciousness of green products, linoleum is seeing a revived popularity.