The Standard Oil Trust, run by John D. Rockefeller, was broken up in the first decade of the twentieth century, after Teddy Roosevelt succeded in bringing anti-trust actions against the company. The original company was broken up into smaller entities which included Standard of N.J. (Humble, Esso, Exxon), Standard of Ohio (Sohio ((later bought out by British Petroleum (BP))), Standard of Indiana (Amoco), Standard of New York (SOCONY, now Mobil), and Standard of California (now Unocal), all recognizable names to this day. Also, Paul Hayes is now at Yorkton Securities, not Yorkshire as in an earlier post. Finally, in terms of value perspective, Harken at 120MM shares outstanding, has 3 times the shares as does Seven Seas at 40MM shares. Since Harken's value is $6/sr., more or less, and Seven Seas' is $18/shr., more or less, the market is giving an equal weighting to the value of both companies, yet only one of these two companies has actually found a billion+ bbl. field in Columbia to date. Guess which one it is??? Hint: It ain't Harken!!!
My understanding of the Esso name came about in this sequence: Humble Oil>Esso(name had a deragtory meaning in Japanese) so was chang to Exxon. In the beginning Humble wanted to become a global Oil Co. and started with the Esso name and very quickly change same.
I am retired from Exxon. Exxon is in the USA, overseas is Esso. When drilling in Alaska we had Drilling supts from Canada, Austrailia and South America working here. Their coveralls all had the Esso emblem on them.
Standard Oil of New Jersey bought Humble but adopted many of Humble's ways of doing business and their personnel policies. Humble took very good care of their employees and demanded the highest standards. It was noted for being a very ethical company. Up in to the 1980s Exxon still bought most of their tanks (fuel tanks, test tanks, water tanks and etc) from a Texas company that had extended credit to Humble back during the depression. I know many people whose Dads worked for the old Humble and they always spoke highly of it. If I am not mistaken Kingsville, Tx, was built by Humble for their employees. Esso bought Humble and then changed the name to Exxon, but only in the States.
Standard Oil of New Jersey, i.e. Esso bought Humble Oil and Humble oil and Esso exisited side by side for awhile. Then both became Exxon when Esso (USA) became Exxon. Exxon's overseas arms in Canada, S. America, and other locations is still known as Esso.
My memory (probably wrong) from high school (class of 60) history is that Standard Oil (S.O., Esso, get it?) became so dominant that they were broken up in one of the early antitrust actions. Successors to the old Standard Oil include Chevron, Esso, Exxon, Texaco, Amoco, Union 76, and a few others I do not remember. I think I remember seeing the occasional Standard Oil station from time to time but at my age some of my older memories blend with newer ones on things of marginal importance.
Incidentally, a few years ago Consumer Reports repeated the results of a study BMW did on gasoline and stuff the processors put into it to keep fuel injectors clean. As I recall, all grades of gasoline sold by the old Standard Oil companies fit the bill.