The organic mailer rich Oligocene Menilite black shales and mudstones are widely distributed in the Carpathian Overthrust region of southeastern Poland and have excellent hydrocarbon generation potential, according to TOC, Rock-Eval, and petrographic data. Extractable organic matter was characterized by an equable distribution of steranes by carbon number, by varying amounts of 28,30-dinor-hopane, 18??(H)-oleanane and by a distinctive group of C24 ring-A degraded triterpanes. The Menilite samples ranged in maturity from pre-generative to mid-oil window levels, with the most mature in the southeastern portion of the study area. Carpathian petroleum samples from Campanian Oligocene sandstone reservoirs were similar in biomarker composition to the Menilite rock extracts. Similarities in aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbon distributions between petroleum asphaltene and source rock pyrolyzates provided further evidence genetically linking Menilite kerogens with Carpathian oils.