Hunter Oil Company got its start in 1956 when a young couple with a big dream began selling engine oil. James and Margaret Hunter were struggling to support a family of six. James, better known as Jim, was working as a sales representative for a distribution company. Margaret worked full time at a manufacturing plant responsible for producing ceramic parts.
Jim spent prior years selling engine oil additives and truck accessories out of his Ford station wagon. He was frequently asked about the popular yet hard to find product “RPM.” RPM was a diesel engine oil produced by California Oil Company which was formed amid the 1911 antitrust breakup of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil.
Jim and Margaret decided to write California Oil Company a letter requesting to become a distributor of the widely popular RPM oil. Through mergers and acquisitions, RPM would later be known as Chevron RPM. Soon after writing the letter, they received a visit at their home in East Ridge, TN by representatives from California Oil. They agreed to take a chance on Jim and Margaret and set them up as a distributor.
Hunter Oil Company, Inc. has been offering a comprehensive line of Automotive, Industrial, and Commercial Lubricants for over 50 years. Our Pledge is to provide our customers unsurpassed service and quality products.
In 1956 Jim and Margaret borrowed money from a friend to get their business up and running and Hunter Oil was born. Jim set out on the road building strong customer relationships. Margaret used her abilities to manage people and handle the office procedures. Jim and Margaret would drive a 2-ton truck over 500 miles to Augusta, GA and back to pick up cases of RPM oil. They stored the oil in a one-car garage at their home.
Hunter Oil Company became the first to distribute bulk Kendall and Chevron motor oils in the Chattanooga area. Jim and Margaret’s two sons, Rick and Mike, started full time in the 1970’s shortly after graduating from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. The company experienced steady growth under the brothers’ conservative and cautious leadership. In 2000 Rick’s son, Charlie, joined the company after graduating from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Hunter Oil is now a 3rd generation company carrying on one hard-working couples’ vision.
In August of 2004 Hunter Oil added a second distribution point just outside of Knoxville, TN. In September of 2014 Hunter Oil added a third distribution facility just north of Birmingham, AL. In May of 2016, Hunter Oil added a fourth distribution facility in Evergreen, AL. The growth of these full service facilities, along with the success of the Chattanooga location, has allowed Hunter Oil to expand its service area. What started as a company delivering cases out of a Ford station wagon has grown into an industry leader, servicing customers throughout the state of Tennessee, northern and central Alabama, northern Georgia, and southern Kentucky.
Hunter Oil Company is a proven company dedicated to its vision, community, and service. Through years of expansion and growth, the Hunters and the employees of Hunter Oil will always remember the most important ingredient to their recipe for success…its customers.