By  on October 20, 2008

NEW YORK — Legendary Oklahoma men's specialty shop May Brothers is closing its doors, just over one year shy of its 100th birthday.

Longtime owner, Michael May, 74, decided to close the Bartlesville, Okla. store in order to spend more time with his family. On Thursday, May Brothers started its going-out-of-business sale, which will continue for two or three months until the entire inventory is gone, May said.

"I've been involved for almost 50 years with the active management of the store, which is a three-generation owned operation," May told DNR Monday. "I'm in good health, I've got four wonderful sons and six grandchildren and I thought it was time for me to enjoy some family time while I still can. More than anything else, it's time. It's time to do something for Mike."

The 2,500-square foot May Brothers shop opened in Bartlesville in 1910 and remained successful in its downtown location thanks in part to Phillips Petroleum Co., which opened its headquarters across the street from the store in the early 1900s.

"Our business has been doing pretty well," May said. "The economy in Oklahoma is based on oil and cattle and both of them have been pretty robust lately. We were very fortunate. While surviving isn't easy, our business has been good, and I'd rather go out because I wanted to rather than because I had to."

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