The Department of Justice filed suit against American Tobacco for violations of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act. In 1911 American was found in violation of the Act. The Department of Justice filed suit against American Tobacco for violations of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act. In 1911 American was found in violation of the Act.
Rebirth of Competition
In October of 1911 the American Tobacco Company Trust was dissolved and broken into several competing companies including: American Tobacco Company, Liggett and Myers Tobacco Company, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, and P. Lorillard Company.
American Tobacco Company
With the 1911 breakup, British American Tobacco was the only company left under Duke control. In 1904 Buck Duke and his brother established the Catawba Power Company and the Southern Power Company, which became known as Duke Power, the precursor to the Duke Energy. Duke also purchased many textile factories that Duke Power’s electrical grid would power. In 1994, BAT acquired its former parent, American Tobacco Company (though reorganized after antitrust proceedings). This brought the Lucky Strike and Pall Mall brands into BAT’s portfolio as part of BAT’s American arm, Brown & Williamson. B&W later merged with R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in 2004.
RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company
The R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company (RJR), based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and founded by R. J. Reynolds in 1875 manufacturing tobacco plug. Forced into James B. Duke’s American Tobacco Company in 1899. When Duke’s Tobacco Trust was dissolved, Reynolds was left with a free and independent company, a much larger plant, and improved machinery. In 1913 Reynolds introduced Camels, a blend of Burley and flue-cured tobacco with some Turkish leaf.
P. Lorillard Co.
In 1899, the American Tobacco Company organized a New Jersey corporation, called the Continental Tobacco Company, that took a controlling interest in many small tobacco companies. By 1910, Duke controlled Lorillard even as it kept its original name. After the breakup in the mid-1920s, Lorillard heavily promoted the Old Gold brand instead of Beech-Nut chewing tobacco. Kent and then later Newport would become Lorillard’s most popular brands.
Liggett & Myers
With roots dating back to the early 1800s snuff trade, around 1869 the company created the first blended cigarettes, using a mixture of Turkish and Virginia tobaccos. A partnership was formed with George Smith Myers of Missouri, and in 1873 The Liggett & Myers Tobacco Company was incorporated. In 1899 Liggett & Myers was acquired by American Tobacco Company. In 1912, Chesterfield was reintroduced and in 1915 Burley and Maryland tobaccos were added to Chesterfield blend. In 1916 Chesterfield added a moisture-proof cover to the paper and foil pack. In 1952, Liggett & Myers using Chesterfield became the first to offer cigarettes in two sizes: King and Regular.
1902 Philip Morris Comes to American
In 1902 Philip Morris, opened his first shop in the United States. A transplant from London he sold, among other brands, the Marlboro cigarette for ladies. Philip Morris was a minor cigarette industry player in those days, but is the largest cigarette manufacturer in America today.
Brown & Williamson Tobacco
Brown & Williamson was founded in Winston, North Carolina, by George T. Brown and his brother-in-law Robert Lynn Williamson. B&W was primarily a plug and chewing tobacco shop. In 1927, the Brown and Williamson families sold the business to London-based British American Tobacco. The business was reorganized as the Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation. Popular brands include Viceroy and KOOL cigarettes.