Standard Oil was an American oil company established in 1870. It was one of the world's first and largest multinational corporations until it was broken up by the United States Supreme Court in 1911 on grounds of monopoly and consequent restraint of trade.
As a result of the Supreme Court decision, in July 1911, the company was divided into a number of smaller successors:
- The largest of them was the former holding company, Standard Oil of New Jersey, with almost half of the total net value; it eventually became Exxon - and never lost its lead. Next largest, with 9 per cent of net value, was Standard Oil of New York, which ultimately became Mobil. There was Standard Oil (California), which ultimately became Chevron; Standard Oil of Ohio, which became Sohio and then the American arm of BP; Standard Oil of Indiana, which became Amoco; Continental Oil, which became Conoco; and Atlantic, which became part of ARCO and then eventually of Sun.
- May 15, 1911 – The U.S. Supreme Court Decided Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey v. United States, Legal Legacy blog, accessed 11 Mar 2010
- Daniel Yergin, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power, Pocket Books, 1993, p.110.