Murphy and Nolan, Inc.
Founded on Monday, November 2, 1953 by Jack Murphy and Jack Nolan, Murphy and Nolan, Inc. began on the 100 block of Erie Boulevard in Syracuse, New York. Jack Murphy and Jack Nolan started as sales representatives for several steel mills and general line warehouses-after about 14 months of success, they started stocking drill rod along their office floor and hired their first inside salesperson.
During the mid-1950’s, Murphy and Nolan began representing Crucible steel for stainless bars and continued their personnel expansion with the hiring of Dick Kelly, Jack Murphy’s brother-in-law. By 1958, the business had grown enough to warrant a move to a portion of a rented building on Genesee Street in Syracuse. The Genesee Street location saw the first 2,000# bundles delivered to M&N, where the material was moved on casters and loaded into storage racks by hand. By the end of the 1950’s, Murphy and Nolan, Inc. had grown to occupy 1,800 square feet of warehouse space.
In 1959, Murphy and Nolan again found themselves with too little space for their growing business. The company moved to its present location at 340 Peat Street in Syracuse. The 1960’s were a period of continued growth for the firm-inside and outside salespeople were added along with various clerical and administrative staff positions. In addition, the Rochester market began to grow for Murphy and Nolan.
The early 1970’s brought John J. Murphy, III to Murphy and Nolan; and brought M&N to Rochester. The front of the General Screw Products building on Brooks Avenue became the Rochester branch location for M&N. Initially, material was stored on the floor and the small staff of 3 or 4 handled all functions of inside/outside sales, warehouse, and delivery.
The tumultuous 1970’s marked the initial transitions from a smaller one-branch firm to a regional service center. This decade also was the final farewell for Jack Nolan. Jack’s passing in 1976 began the transition from the founders of the company to the next generation. After Jack’s death, John (Bucky) Murphy inherited several administrative duties while Jack Murphy and Dick Kelly continued their overall leadership efforts.
Labor difficulties in the middle of the decade forced senior managers to load trucks and run the warehouse before going on the road to make sales calls. The threat of a union environment galvanized the management team and the road was paved for further investments in people and equipment.
In the early 1980’s, Jack Dailey moved from Syracuse to Rochester to coordinate the branch office; and Ed Dera joined M&N to assume branch manager duties in Syracuse. Like the national economy, the early 1980’s were a difficult time for M&N, but good people working together managed to guide the company to continued profitability and success. By the end of the decade, M&N was well known in both Syracuse and Rochester as the leader in cold finished bars and mechanical tubing.