Atlantic Petroleum was an oil company in the Eastern United States headquartered in Philadelphia, and a direct descendant of the Standard Oil Trust. It was also one of the companies that merged with Richfield Oil to form ARCO, now part of BP.
Atlantic was founded as the Atlantic Petroleum Storage Company in 1866, in the then fledgling oil business. In 1874, the company, now known as Atlantic Refining, was acquired by John D. Rockefeller and integrated as part of Standard Oil.
In 1886, after acquiring other oil companies, the Standard Oil Trust organized territories for their companies. Atlantic's territory covered the entire state of Delaware, the southern half of New Jersey, and the southeastern most corner of Pennsylvania.
Due to antitrust issues that would eventually lead to the demise of the Trust in 1911, Atlantic absorbed fellow Standards Acme Oil of Pennsylvania and the original, Pittsburgh-based Standard Oil in 1892.
As a result of the Sherman Antitrust Act, the Standard Oil Trust was broken up. And Atlantic was one of eleven companies to acquire rights to the Standard name. In total, thirty companies were formed from the breakup. The most notable ones without rights to the Standard name being the Ohio Oil Company, which became Marathon and South Penn Oil Company, which though various mergers and acquisitions became Pennzoil. Atlantic's rights were in the entire states of Pennsylvania and Delaware, as it had given up the southern half of New Jersey to Jersey Standard which later became Exxon, and then ExxonMobil.
However, like Standard Conoco which became ConocoPhillips. Atlantic found more marketing power in it's own name than the Standard name and declined the option to use the name. The rights to the Standard name in Pennsylvania would be acquired by a newly formed Standard Oil of Pennsylvania. Which would be acquired by Exxon in the late 1930's. ExxonMobil still owns the rights to the Standard name in Pennsylvania and Delaware.
Over the years, Atlantic expanded across the East Coast of the United Stated, mainly through acquisitions. Trying to establish a national presence. Atlantic merged with West Coast Oil company Richfield Oil in 1966. The combined company became known as the Atlantic Richfield Company, better known by its acronym as ARCO.
While the merger with Richfield and eventual rebranding of the stations to ARCO was successful. It essentially made the company a bi coastal chain. Having no presence from east of the Rocky Mountains to west of the Appalachian Mountains, with the exception of Western Pennsylvania. Since Atlantic was prominent in that state. This was remedied with the purchase of Sinclair Oil in 1969. This purchase did not go as well, and the Eastern assets of Sinclair as well as Atlantic's old assets in the Southeast were sold to BP in 1971. Sinclair also struggled to be rebranded as ARCO.
After an unsuccessful spinoff from ARCO, Atlantic was acquired by Sunoco in 1988.