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History of Hershey's Chocolate & Milton Hershey

In 1894 Milton Hershey started the Hershey Chocolate Company.

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heart-shaped boxes of Hershey's chocolate

heart-shaped boxes of Hershey's chocolate

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images
Milton Hershey was born on September 13, 1857, in a farmhouse near the Central Pennsylvania village of Derry Church. Milton was in the fourth grade when his Mennonite father, Henry Hershey, found his son a position as an printer's apprentice in Gap, Pennsylvania. Milton later became an apprentice to a candy-maker in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and candy-making became a passion which Milton grew to love.

Milton Hershey - First Candy Shop

In 1876, when Milton was only eighteen-years old, he opened his own candy shop in Philadelphia. However, the shop was closed after six years and Milton moved to Denver, Colorado, where he worked with a caramel manufacturer and learned caramel-making. In 1886, Milton Hershey moved back to Lancaster, Pennsylvania and started the successful Lancaster Caramel Company.

Hershey's Chocolate

In 1893, Milton Hershey attended the Chicago International Exposition where he bought German chocolate-making machinery and began making chocolate-coated caramels. In 1894, Milton started the Hershey Chocolate Company and produced Hershey chocolate caramels, breakfast cocoa, sweet chocolate and baking chocolate. He sold his caramel business and concentrated on chocolate-making.

Famous Brands

The Hershey Chocolate Company has made or currently owns many famous Hershey chocolate candies including: Almond Joy and Mounds candy bars, Cadbury Creme Eggs candy, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme candy bar, Hershey's milk chocolate and milk chocolate with almonds bars, Hershey's Nuggets chocolates, Hershey's Kisses and Hershey's Hugs chocolates, Kit Kat wafer bar, Reese's crunchy cookie cups, Reese's NutRageous candy bar, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Sweet Escapes candy bars, TasteTations candy, Twizzlers candy, Whoppers malted milk balls, and York Peppermint Patties.

Hershey's Kisses chocolates were first introduced in 1907 by Milton Hershey, who trademarked the "plume" extending out of the wrapper in 1924.

Photo Descriptions

First: Heart-shaped boxes of Hershey's chocolate are displayed at Hershey's Chicago February 13, 2006 in downtown Chicago, Illinois. The store, the second retail shop for the company outside Hershey, Pennsylvania, opened in Chicago in June 2005. Business at the store has been better than anticipated leading up to Valentine's Day.

Second: The world's largest Hershey's Kisses chocolate is unveiled at the Metropolitan Pavilion July 31, 2003 in New York City. The consumer-sized chocolate contains 25 calories; the world's largest contains 15,990,900

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