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The Vacuum Oil Company was founded in 1866. By Matthew Ewing and Hiram Bond Everest, of Rochester, New York.

Lubrication oil was an accidental discovery, while attempting to distill kerosene. Hiram Everest noted that the residue from the extraction was suitable as a lubricant.

The product became popular for use in steam engines and the internal combustion engines. Ewing later sold his interest in the company to Everest. Everest carried on the company. Vacuum was acquired by Standard Oil in 1879. It originated the Mobil trademark in 1899 as "Mobilgas" and later "Mobiloil."

The Vacuum Oil Company and the Standard Oil Company of New York (Socony) merged in 1931. After the government gave up attempts to prevent there merger. The union, as the Socony Vacuum Corporation. Made them the company the third largest oil company at the time. Everest was given a salary job as President and remained with the company.

When the Standard Oil Company was broken up in 1911. Under the terms of the Sherman Antitrust Act. The Vacuum Oil Company became an independent company again.

In 1955, the company became the Socony Mobil Oil Company.

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