Today’s generation will remember Walmart, Target, Dollar General, Walgreen’s, etc. Most likely, those memories will pale in comparison to the tales told of the days when G.C. Murphy’s was all the rage. Except back then, we probably called the department store giant “swell” or “groovy”.
To millennials, G.C. Murphy’s is nothing more a topic brought up at holidays while families reminisce of the “old days”. To many Pittsburghers, G.C. Murphy’s was a way of life. The retail giant, whose first store was opened in McKeesport in 1906, had more than seventy Pittsburgh-area stores before being bought out in the 1980s. In fact, the influence the retail icon was the focus of a 2008 book by Jason Togyer entitled For the Love of Murphy’s: The Behind-the-Counter Story of a Great American Retailer (Penn State University Press).
A fantastic article, written in 2009 by Jessica Dailey for the Pittsburgh City Paper, detailing some historical facts about Murphy’s and reviewing Togyer’s book can be found HERE!