A Guide to the John D. Rockefeller Sr. Business Papers, 1875
John Davidson Rockefeller (July 8, 1839-May 23, 1937) was an American industrialist and philanthropist. He was the founder of the Standard Oil Company, which dominated the oil industry and was the first great U.S. business trust. Rockefeller revolutionized the petroleum industry and defined the structure of modern philanthropy.
Standard Oil was incorporated in 1870 and, under Rockefeller's leadership, established itself as the most important factor in the petroleum industry in America. The spectacular advance of Standard Oil was initiated with the aid of the South Improvement Company, an association of leading refiners. Upon its formation in 1872, Rockefeller became master of about one-third of the refining business in the country.
By 1875 the large refineries in New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh had likewise merged with Standard Oil and by 1878 Rockefeller had control of over 90% of the refineries in the United States. The dissolution of the South Improvement Company in 1872, following a Congressional investigation and popular protest, necessitated a new form of organization to achieve unified control. The Central Association of Refiners was organized in 1875.
Collection contains two leases and a stock agreement made between the Central Association and Fairfield McCray and Co., Petroleum Center, PA, signed by Rockefeller as president of the Central Association of Refiners.
This collection is open for research use.
John D. Rockefeller Sr. Business Papers, 1875, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by Stefanie Lapka, January 2013.
Detailed Description of the Papers