The Murdick’s, Henry F. and N. Jerome, opened Mackinac Island’s first candy shop sometime in the 1880s, and about 40 years later, trademarked their name. Then, in the 1950s, N. Jerome passed the "Murdick’s Famous Fudge" patented trademark, along with all his candy- and fudge-making recipes and secrets, on to F. Jerold Murdick for exclusive use at the shop in Charlevoix, which is found smack-dab in the middle of downtown. In an age where so many successful independent ventures are eventually taken over by large corporations, the Murdick’s have kept it in the family, with fourth-generation Murdick’s Gary and Jeryl now running the show.
Nothing has changed over the years, except Murdick’s popularity and the scope of their operation. During the busy summer tourism season, you’ll likely find a line of fudge-loving patrons clamoring for one, two, or three slices of their rich, gooey masterpieces. With 14 different flavors to choose from, including chocolate swirl, maple pecan, and ones mentioned above, there’s plenty to go around. And since everything is made on site, the friendly staff can always whip up another batch if they run out.
Murdick’s isn’t just in the fudge game, however. They also offer homemade brittle (pecan and peanut), homemade caramel (vanilla, vanilla pecan, butterscotch, and rum and butter), a variety of taffy flavors, as well as their most recent addition, caramel corn, which is made from Jeryl Murdick’s mother’s recipe. Lucky for you, you don’t have to go to Charlevoix if all of this is making your mouth water uncontrollably—just drop them a line to request a mail order, another example of how Murdick’s has moved their 19th-century operation into the 21st.
And now, back to gym… thanks a lot Murdick family!
by Mr. Wonka
Brooklyn, New York
June 25, 2005
From journal Charlevoix: An Escape to Northern Michigan