Pine Bluff Truck and Trailer Inc. hosted an open house and customer appreciation banquet at the Island Harbor Marina Road facility Friday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the business and to thank the customers for helping the firm reach a milestone.
Harold Staton and his wife, Dean, began Pine Bluff Truck and Trailer in 1962. Don Miller was also a key player in the start of the business as service manager, Staton said, working for the company for 28 years before retiring in 1997.
Pine Bluff Trailer Manufacturing Co. Inc. was started in a small building on U.S. 79 North in Pine Bluff. In the beginning, it wasn’t unusual for the two men to work 13 hour days or to be called out in the middle of the night to make trailer repairs. They did some custom trailer building at that time and made modifications on existing trailers.
Staton purchased land on Island Harbor Marina Road and in 1974 work began to prepare the land for a new building. By 1976, their new building was finished and they relocated the business to the current location at 110 Island Harbor Marina Road.
Over the years the business moved away from manufacturing, focusing on parts sales and repair work, Staton said. As a result the company name in 2001 was changed to Pine Bluff Truck and Trailer Inc.
The original shop was expanded to include 10 bays and a new building was added to house the offices and parts showroom along with additional warehouse space.
The company has 23 employees and provides truck and trailer parts and service to Southeast Arkansas and surrounding areas. The service department does major and minor repairs on both trucks and trailers and is managed by Mark Greenlee.
The parts department now consists of two warehouses, some $450,000 in inventory and is managed by Kenneth Staton.
During the celebration, King Kat catered the banquet and entertainment was provided by Doug Scallion.