Navy Ray's

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Offering the cool, the funky, the unusual. Although we hope to have something for everyone, we tend to specialize in automotive, industrial, advertising, mid-century, American painted furniture and folk art.

The story behind Navy Ray's: Ray Miller was born in 1918 in York, PA. When he was 14 years old, he got his first tattoo. By the time he was 16, he mail-ordered his first tattoo “outfit” and began inking his friends. A few years later, he was traveling the carnival circuit in South Central PA, setting up his booth, and putting his mark on many a hide. Ray was a tattoo artist.
He was also a cowboy. A prize fighter. A soldier. A cook. A farmer. A race car driver. He was an amateur archeologist. Of all the many things Ray was good at, he was best at being a Grandfather. He was mine.
Over the years, Grandpa Ray taught me many things. He shared his wisdom and his view on life. He taught me to appreciate the old, the worn out, the forgotten. How do make do with what you had, and to see the value in the discarded. It seemed to me that he could fix anything, and seemingly make something out of nothing. He rarely threw anything away. In fact, it was usually the opposite - rescuing “treasures” from dumps and trash heaps. I remember spending hours marveling over all the cool old“stuff”stashed in the barn, the chicken coup, and both garages.
During one visit to Grandpa and Nan’s house, I announced that I was going to college to become something called a graphic designer. After a feeble explanation of what, exactly, a graphic designer was, Grandpa lead me up into their attic, where after a few minutes of shuffling boxes, he unearthed his long forgotten tattoo art. I was astounded.
When Grandpa passed away in 1998, my one brother got his boxing gloves. My other brother got his favorite saddle. I asked if I could have his tattoo “stuff”. But that’s not all I inherited from Grandpa Ray. I also inherited his passion for rescuing treasures.