About Us

Founded in 1999 we are located in Cape Girardeau with deep roots along the Mississippi river.

How we got started

In Cape Girardeau, Missouri, the company’s first endeavor as a Barbecue Industry Pioneer was creation of the Port Cape Girardeau Restaurant – a landmark in Southeast Missouri overlooking the Mississippi River. Specializing in barbecue ribs, the restaurant’s immediate popularity allowed the company to see the potential for barbecue in the early 1970s. The company’s experience with its first barbecue pit design used at its restaurant pointed the company toward the need for better barbecue equipment, which became the Ole Hickory Pits Division of the company.

How we first caught fire

In 2001 there was no modern technology when it came to barbecue cooking equipment. You either used a metal barrel or built a brick barbecue pit. Since the building was already brick, Knight fashioned his first designed brick pit inside the building. The large brick pit’s flu extended up through the second and third floor and above the roof. The temperature was controlled by a manual damper half way up the inside of the flue and operated by pulling a chain. The control device worked flawlessly, as long as you remembered to close it in time. If you didn’t you could have 600 pounds of fatty pork butts turning into rocket fuel. Long story short, the third time the Cape Girardeau Fire Department came to put out the pit fire, it dawned on the young entrepreneur that there must be a better way and David began crafting innovative barbeque cooking equipment.

Over the years

The company has evolved from a leading manufacturer of commercial barbecue smoker ovens sold throughout the world, to also adding a line of “Award-winning” sauces and rubs. These unique blends and flavors are a perfect combination of both “The Early Days of BBQ” and the new “Super Bold and Rich” flavors of the “One Bite” challenge that comes with the BBQ competition worlds flavor profile. We have a fan favorite sauce or rub for every member of the family.


Ole Hickory Pits sells its products throughout the world to customers who require the highest quality and reliability from their smokers. At Ole Hickory Pits we have made it our goal to come up with innovative ways to stay on top of the demand, through continuous research and development.

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