Our History

Home > Why Carter > Our History

Serving You Since 1952

The 1950’s were a pivotal point in our country’s history, highlighted by a sharp rise in the economy for the first time in more than 30 years. While Caterpillar has been present in Virginia since 1928 through the Virginia Tractor Company, the ever increasing activity in western Virginia demanded a greater focus thanks to infrastructure developments and coal mining. As a result, Carter Machinery was formed to serve customers in southwestern Virginia.

Our Major Milestones

  • 1952 – Carter Machinery Company, Inc. officially founded. 1955 – Bluefield, WV store opened.
  • 1957 – Norton, VA store opened.
  • 1962 – Corporate headquarters moved to present location in Salem, VA.
  • 1965 – Norton, VA store moved to an expanded facility. 1975 – Reconditioning Center, created to rebuild major components and machines, opened at Salem headquarters.
  • 1977 – Oakwood, VA store opened.
  • 1982 – Eastern Virginia territory, served by Virginia Tractor Company, acquired and combined under Carter Machinery, adding four stores: Chesapeake, Fishersville, Norfolk and Richmond, VA. During the same year, a new store in Pineville, WV was opened.
  • 1985 – Warrenton, VA store opened.
  • 1986 – Newport News store opened.
  • 1990 – Fredericksburg and Richmond Power Systems Division stores opened.
  • 1991 – Lynchburg store opened.
  • 1993 – Roanoke Power Systems Division store opened.
  • 1995 – Chesapeake Power Systems Division store opened.
  • 1996 – Roanoke General Construction Division store opened.
  • 1997 – Fishersville, VA store moved to present location.
  • 1999 – Richmond Power Systems Division store moved to present location.
  • 2000 – South Hill and Chesterfield stores opened.
  • 2001 – Lynchburg store moved to present location.
  • 2006 – Pineville, WV and Abingdon, VA stores moved to new, expanded facilities. Harrisonburg store opened.
  • 2007 – Carter Machinery purchased the Virginia assets of Pioneer Machinery, the Cat Forest Products dealer.
  • 2008 – Harrisonburg store moved to its present location.
  • 2009 – Newport News and Yorktown stores moved to new, combined location in Williamsburg.
  • 2010 – Bluefield, WV store moved to new location in Princeton, WV.
  • 2011 – Change of ownership from Caterpillar Inc. as a result of a management led buyout.
  • 2013 – Carter Machinery became the exclusive Blue Bird Bus dealer in the state of Virginia.
  • 2013 – Carter Machinery acquired the expanded Cat Mining equipment distribution and support business for our territories from Caterpillar Global Mining LLC.