William C. (Billy) Durant formed Durant-Dort Carriage Company in 1886 with business partner J. Dallas Dort. Together, they grew the company into the largest if not one of the largest carriage and buggy manufacturing companies in the United States.
In 1904 Durant jumped over to the automobile manufacturing business by joining with David Dunbar Buick to manufacture the Buick automobile, which saw great success. In 1908 Durant formed General Motors, which eventually produced Buick, Oldsmobile, Cadillac, Oakland and later, Chevrolet as well as other companies supporting the automotive industry.
General Motors became the largest automobile company in the United States, next to Ford Motor Company. In 1921 Durant left General Motors and started the Durant Motors Automobile Company Inc., producing automobiles under the name of Durant, Star, Flint, Mason and acquiring the automobile company Locomobile in 1922. Durant Motors Inc. continued in business until 1931 when the effects on the Great Depression in the United States contributed to the decline of the company. It filed for bankruptcy and stopped operation in the United States. Associates of Durant Motors Inc. as well as various left over parts went into production of other automobile companies that were short lived such as DeVaux, Frontenac and Continental Motors.