The American Record Company was founded by Ellsworth A. Hawthorne and Horace Sheble (formerly dealers for Edison Records who had been blacklisted for their questionable business methods) and Frederick M. Prescot. It was based in Springfield, Massachusetts. They produced single-sided lateral-cut-groove disc records.
The principals were connected with the Odeon Records firm (some export pressings carried the "American Odeon Record" name). Most of the records are single sided, but there are also two-sided records known on the label; one researcher stated that the company would press any two sides paired, if the buyer met the minimum-order qualification. As well, these records are notable for being blue in color, rather than the usual black. Several variations of the "Indian" label exist, differing only in minor details. The records appear to have been numbered using a sequence which began at (or near) 030000; the numbers had reached the mid 031000's by the end of operation. The records exist in 7-inch, 10-inch and 10.75-inch sizes, with the latter size being derived from its connection with Odeon (which also used that size). The seven-inch discs used a different numbering sequence, and seemed to have only been produced for a short time. The double-faced issues used the numbers of each side when issued.
In February 1979 Maurice White of the R&B group Earth, Wind and Fire launched the American Recording Corporation (ARC), a Columbia Records distributed label whose artist roster included Deniece Williams and the Emotions.