The Ridgway Heritage Council has announced a new project to publish a book about the history of Ridgway’s prestigious Hyde-Murphy Company. Local historians Bob Imhof and Dale Fox are coordinating the effort with local author Dennis McGeehin, who is well-known for his “America Through Time” history book series. “This is not just a Ridgway story”, explained Ms. Fox. “It is not just an Elk County story. It is a national story”.

Established at Ridgway in 1884 by Joseph S. Hyde and Walter P. Murphy, the company became a leading manufacturer of architectural millwork in the eastern United States and far beyond. Homes and businesses in Ridgway’s “Lily of the Valley” National Historic Register District retain stunning examples of their work, as well as many locations in St. Marys and Johnsonburg and other communities throughout our region.

While the manufacturing complex located along Race Street (site of the present community pools) is long gone, their office building still stands as a quiet testament on the opposite side of the street. The personal stories of the individuals who left this magnificent legacy will also be told.

The Heritage Council encourages residents with interesting information, artifacts, personal memories or photographs about the company and its founders to send an email to In addition, the team encourages local home and business owners with significant examples of their woodwork, and would allow it to be photographed, to contact the team. Volunteer photographers are also being recruited.

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