Busy Beaver | Digital Third Coast

Rose Leadem

Online Editorial Assistant

The unsung business successes are sometimes the companies that create a true legacy — the ones that outlive their founders.

These companies don’t always make the headlines. But they sustain their communities and their employees for generations — even centuries. 

Related: The 15 Most Profitable Small-Business Industries

These companies are the definition of resilience. They’ve needed to adapt to changes in leadership and market needs. For instance, California’s longest surviving business is aluminum manufacturing company Ducommun. This company started as a hardware store during the Gold Rush in 1849. Today, it supplies aluminum to the aerospace industry.

Over decades, these long-running businesses have built their reputations. C.D. Peacock Jewelry in Chicago opened in 1837 — the same year Chicago officially became a city. This company built trust from its earliest days — safegaurding valuables from the city’s great fire in its vault. Since then its customers have included Chicago’s top society leaders including Mary Todd Lincoln and Marshall Field.

These companies serve as an inspiration, with some U.S. businesses dating back to the 1600s. Find out the oldest business in your state with this special slideshow. 

Research and graphics courtesy of Busy Beaver and Digital Third Coast. Slideshow information presented first in this coordinating infographic. 

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Get to Know the Oldest Businesses in Every State (Slideshow)

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