Cost-effective, versatile and environmentally-friendly, steel drums are a favored means of secure packaging as they can handle temperature and other environmental extremes without leakage. The 55-gallon container is a descendant of the wooden barrel used as early as the 3rd century AD. In fact, the ancient craft of barrel practiced by coopers making water-tight, wooden vessels held together by nothing more than the hoops that surround them continued into modern times.
In fact, Con-Tech founder Robert G. Evans Jr. descended from a long line of coopers. His Great Uncle Charles Evans was president of Chickasaw Barrel Company in New Orleans, where Robbie’s grandfather started as a cooper. He then converted his backyard stables into his own cooperage, where he purchased and repaired secondhand wooden barrels collected by wagon. Robbie’s dad worked there, at Chickasaw, and then formed Evans Cooperage Company. There Robbie, his twin brother, and his sister learned about manufacturing, reconditioning and filling steel drums. From the age of twelve, Robbie assumed various tasks at Evans, where he rose to the position of Vice President, eventually serving at Evans locations in Louisiana, Texas, and Missouri. Robbie graduated from the University of New Orleans with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Management in 1976 and founded Con-Tech International in 1983.