R+L Carriers Inc. was started in 1965 by Ralph L. Roberts, a teenager who wanted to one day own a business. His first truck was purchased in 1965 to haul furniture.
Originally, Roberts' operation was contained in Ohio, but the business quickly expanded into five other Midwestern and Southern states. In May of 1989, Roberts acquired Gator Freightways, Inc. in the South. The company continued to expand a few years later with the purchase of Greenwood Motor Lines, Inc. in April of 1992. Each year new service areas were added in order to increase service area strength.
Thanks to the deregulation of the trucking industry in the 1980s, Larry Roberts was able to incorporate the company at the same time that it designed a new system for moving freight faster than any other company. When the company was incorporated, its name became R+L Transfer, Inc. In the five years following the incorporation of the company service stations were added in 23 more states. By the year 2006, R+L's operations had expanded to include Oregon and Washington. As of 2015, the shipping company serves all 50 states, as well as the countries Canada, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and several Caribbean Islands.