Our Story

The Cary Company 1895George B. CaryThe Cary Company was founded in 1895 by George B. Cary and began operations in Chicago as a linseed cake and meal exporter. The company operated successfully for two decades until World War I necessitated switching to a domestic business. Thereupon, the company became a manufacturer’s agent to distribute raw materials to the paint industry, at which time George Cary’s son, Robert, entered the business.

The five decades that followed bought steady progress and growth for The Cary Company and were marked at intervals by the acquisition of additional, carefully chosen product lines. Grandson William A. Cary joined the business in 1946. William G. Cary, a great grandson, joined the company in 1970 and is now a Board Member. He represents the fourth generation of Carys.

The Cary Company
T.J. Tyrrell, VP Marketing & Operations; Kenneth E. Tyrrell, President & CEO

Kenneth E. Tyrrell, President & CEO; T.J. Tyrrell, VP Marketing & Operations; Nick Sperka, Sales Manager of Packaging & Filtration; and Carolyn Sperka, VP of Service Operations, make up an integral part of Cary’s management team.

The Cary CompanyToday, The Cary Company is proud to represent an unparalleled list of distinguished suppliers and recognized leaders in their respective fields which serve myriad industries such as paint and coatings, apiary, asphalt, automotive, brewery, building, chemical, electronics, food, foundries, graphic arts, oil and grease, paper, plastics, personal care, pharmaceuticals, putty, caulks, sealants, rubber, detergents and wallpaper.

Our experienced staff is ready to serve your needs in every capacity. Through the excellent facilities of our manufacturers’ research laboratories, we provide unparalleled service for matters requiring special technical assistance. Our own fleet of trucks gives us delivery flexibility. Check out our videos to learn more about who we are and what we represent!

The Cary Company is also an active member of both the National Association of Container Distributors (NACD) and the National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) and have signed on to their Responsible Distribution program. In July 1997 we moved to a new 140,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art headquarters and warehouse facility in Addison, IL for optimal customer service. In 2016 we expanded our headquarters to 240,000 sq. ft. to support our continued growth.

In March 2001, The Cary Company acquired the Horton-Earl Company of St. Paul, MN. As a model of distribution excellence for many years in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and surrounding states, the Horton-Earl acquisition furthered our reach in the paints, inks, adhesives, rubber and related industries.

2018 saw the acquisition of Gurman Container & Supply Corporation, which grew our footprint in the rigid packaging industry. In 2019 we acquired Three Rivers Packaging, Inc. to strengthen our drum and tote offering. Through these additions, The Cary Company has expanded both sales territory and product lines to meet the demands of our growing customer base. In March of 2021, The Cary Company divested its raw materials and specialty chemicals distribution business as part of a strategic restructuring to focus greater on containers and packaging. The raw materials and specialty chemicals business unit was sold to Maroon Group LLC, owned by Barentz International. We now provide Maroon Group LLX with our reputable warehousing and logistics services. 2021 also brought the acquisition of Quality Container, LLC, a Salt Lake City-based distributor specializing in drums, pails, cans and bottles. This acquisition enhances The Cary Company's position as a leading provider of drums, IBCs and industrial packaging and expands our geographical presence in the Intermountain and West Coast regions.

We are grateful to all of our loyal customers for making our first 125 years of progress possible and we look forward to the privilege of continuing to serve them in the future!