Why Are Wall Beds Called Murphy Beds?

Murphy Wall Beds

Ever wondered why Wall Beds are called Murphy Beds?  Mystery solved!  Back at the beginning of last Century (that would be the early 1900’s) a young man named William L. Murphy moved to rowdy San Francisco.  He had trained horses, driven a stagecoach and even been a sheriff for a short time, but moved to the big city to find a wife and settle down.

There was one problem though!  Society obviously frowned on a man entertaining a woman in his bedroom, and William lived in a tiny one-room apartment that included a bed.  As legend has it, Murphy fell in love with an Opera Singer (who he later married) and was desperate to woo her, but had nowhere to visit with her.  They say that “necessity is the mother of invention” and so it was!  Murphy devised an ingenious new wall bed system using a door and some hinges to hide his bed and turn his bedroom into a parlor…. thus making it an acceptable place to entertain a lady!

Murphy perfected his invention, introducing a pivot and counterbalance system which he received a series of patents for, and his company is still in business today!  In 1989, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that the term “Murphy Bed” had entered common usage so thoroughly that it was no longer eligible for trademark protection…. But even so, Wall Beds will be forever attached to the name “Murphy.”

The Resurgence of Murphy Wall Beds

Although Wall Beds have been around for more than a century, they have had a huge resurgence in popularity due to a number of factors.  One is the economic downturn and one is Urban Living.

With the tightening of the U.S. Economy, many young adults and their families have moved back in with their parents.  With “multi-family living comes a shortage of space for so many additional family members in one home.  Also due to the economy, more people are remodeling rather than moving to new homes.  Older couples are also downsizing to smaller living areas or planning for the future by turning a room on their main floor into a space that can be utilized as an office or sitting room now, but have a Wall Bed built-in for main floor living when it’s necessary.

Murphy Wall Beds can take a single room and offer multi-use options.  That is also why they are so popular for urban living where space is at a premium.  One tiny space often must be used as bedroom, living room and office, and now custom Wall Bed Units are available in many practical, yet stunning combinations!  You can choose from not only both vertical and horizontal fold-out beds in any size, your versatile Wall Bed unit can also include fold-out Tables and Desks.  In addition to all these choices, your custom designed wall bed unit can be created out of any melamine product in multiple colors, or from any number of rich, beautiful woods.  It’s YOUR choice!  No wonder Wall Beds are making such a huge comeback!  Practical and Spectacular!

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