After graduating in 1918 at the top of his engineering class at the University of Arkansas, C.B. Ford moved to Dyersburg, Tennessee, and started Ford Paving Company. A few years later, Ford Paving Company merged with Forcum James Construction Company, which had been founded in 1911 by Hilt Forcum. Throughout the years, C.B. Ford and his brother, Ralph Ford, continued to acquire additional ownership in Forcum James Construction Company until they owned a 50% interest.
Forcum James Construction Company became a national leader.
In the 1940’s, Forcum James Construction Company became a national leader in both commercial and civil work projects. Their work included commercial and government buildings, road and bridge construction, asphalt and concrete paving, grading, flood control structures, airports, military bases, and marine revetments.
The Ford brothers retained the civil division and started Ford Construction Company.
In 1955, Forcum James Construction Company split in half, and the Ford brothers retained the civil division and started Ford Construction Company, providing heavy civil construction services throughout the mid-south. Ralph Ford moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to run the southern division and C.B. Ford was later joined in the business by his two sons, Kent and Jere Ford.
Since that time, Ford Construction Company has expanded its operations with the acquisition of Choctaw Transportation Company, a marine contractor, Camden Gravel Company, an aggregate producer, the West Tennessee paving and gravel operations of Ken-Tenn Construction, and the bridge business of W.T. Cutcheon and Associates.
Today, Ford Construction Company continues to be the leader in asphalt paving as well as bridge and civil construction services in the west Tennessee area under the 3rd and 4th generation of the Ford family.