At the top of Main Street in Nantucket, Massachusetts, sits this veritable retail legend. Originally known as the island’s main supplier of the essentials, Murray’s was always a source for footwear, waders, hunting clothes and foul weather gear. Over the years, however, it has grown to be known as Nantucket’s department store, a reliable stop for just about anything that one might need. However, what has really put this little family owned store on the map, so to speak, is what is affectionately known as the Nantucket Reds, Murray’s exclusive line of clothing that is recognized world-wide as a connection to this little island off the coast of Massachusetts.
It has been said that R.H Macy (born Nantucket, MA 1822) returned from a whaling excurcion and opened two dry goods stores in 1943, including Nantucket location on corner of Main Street and Fair Street. Later Macy would go on to open Macy’s Department Store in New York City.
Murray purchases the store and renames it Murray’s Toggery Shop at 62 Main Street. The store is remodeled and reopened. However, what has really put this little family owned store on the map, so to speak, is what is affectionately known as the Nantucket Reds, Murray’s exclusive line of clothing.
The store was purchased by Philip Murray in 1945, and by the early 1950’s, his son Philip C. Murray had returned from Virginia to resume island life and take over the business. It was in the 1960’s that Philip C. Murray introduced the now iconic Nantucket Reds.