Date of Award

Spring 2013

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Professor Gunderson


Standard Oil was founded by John D. Rockefeller and later dismantled by the US Supreme Court in 1911 for attempting to monopolize the market of the refined-oil kerosene. The objective of this thesis is to determine if the Supreme Court’s accusations relating to predatory pricing were based on facts; or did the government make groundless denunciations due to pressure from society at the time.

My objective revolves a historical case study that can be understood with economic theory. I intend to use empirical information from historical data about the growth of the company to determine whether the accusation of employing predatory pricing with an attempt to monopolize the market of kerosene is based on facts. Given that this is essentially a case study and the focus on the topic will be from a historical point of view, I will compliment this empiricism with economic theories and several key assumptions in order to understand the implications of the subject.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Economics.