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Posted August 25, 2012
Nearly everyone has heard of Hershey’s chocolates, and most people have eaten either a Hershey Bar or a Hershey’s Kiss. Milton Snavely Hershey (1857–1945) was born near the little town of Derry Church, PA, to Henry and "Fanny" Hershey who were of German-Swiss heritage and members of Pennsylvania's Mennonite community. After receiving his education at the one-room schoolhouse in Derry Church, the Rockridge School, and four other schools, and being fired as an apprentice to a newspaper editor, Milton became an apprentice in Lancaster, PA, with a confectioner named Joe Royer and learned the trade of candy making.
Hershey tried to get established in the candy business at Philadelphia, PA; Denver, CO; Chicago, IL; New Orleans, LA; and New York City, NY. However, he was not successful until he returned to Lancaster and founded the Lancaster Caramel Company. Following a visit to England, he decided to switch the focus of his business to chocolate, bought a huge cornfield outside his birthplace of Derry Church, and built a chocolate factory. To provide for his workers, he created the town of Hershey with comfortable homes, an inexpensive public transportation system, a quality public school system, and extensive recreational and cultural opportunities. Also, he used his fortune to establish a school for underprivileged children and made Hershey into a tourist attraction with many points of interest such as a visitor’s center, a zoo, an amusement park, and a museum. Hershey married Kitty Sweeney in 1898, but she died prematurely in 1915, and the couple had no children.
This book is one of the “Creative Minds Biography” series from the Lerner Publishing Co. We visited Hershey, PA, last year, and I picked up this book in the Milton S. Hershey Museum gift shop as a memento of our time there. Author Betty Burford does a great job of explaining to youngsters how Hershey struggled to establish himself in the candy business and describing how he used his wealth to benefit others. The black-and-white illustrations by Loren Chantland are somewhat grainy and reminiscent of photographs from the period. Lerner has published some twenty or so other Creative Minds Biographies, including Mr. Blue Jeans: A Story About Levi Strauss by Maryann N. Weldt.
Posted January 21, 2008
This book is about Milton Hershey. Milton Hershey is the creator of all Hershey products that we all know and love. Milton Hershey was a farm boy in Pennsylvania and lived with his Mom, Dad, and sister. When Milton was about 13, Fanny his aunt and his Mother thought that it would be good for Milton to learn a trade. So Milton went and started to work for someone named Sam Ernst. Sam Ernst was the editor of a newspaper and he was a very mean man. Eventually Milton got fired by Mr. Ernst, so he went on to work a man named Joe Royer. Mr.Royer was a candy salesman. He wasn't as hard on Milton as Mr.Ernst was. He was very nice to Milton. If Milton made a mistake he wouldn't get angry and scream in his ears like Mr. Ernst would do. He would forgive Milton and give him another chance. So Milton went on working for Mr.Royer.And what was Milton making you might ask? Well he was NOT making chocolate at the time, no, he was making probably the next most popular thing to chocolate...caramels. Eventually Milton rented a small brick building so he could start his own candy business. Milton still went on making carmels, but, his caramels eventually got so loved by the world that he got invited to a tea party in England and to his surprise he found people dipping his caramels in chocolate. He noticed some children grabbing some chocolates and running behind the building the party was being held at, and he saw that the children didn't care about what was in the chocolate, they just liked the chocolate!. So when he got back to Pennsylvania he decided that he should make a candy that is for the children and for others who just want chocolate. So Milton got right to business making his chocolates. He called them Hershey's Cocoa. These choc0lates were a world wide favorite. One of Milton's frequent customers was Miss Catherine Sweeny, also known as 'Kitty'. Milton fell in love with Kitty and he eventually asked her to marry him. Kitty said yes and they found a house and they moved in. Now, both Milton and Kitty wanted to have children but Milton was too busy with work to worry about starting a family. Since Kitty really wanted to have a family her and Milton opened a school for orphan boys. The home was boys only. Aout 8 years later Milton's wife Kitty died. Milton named the school he and Kitty had started the Milton Hershey School. This would be a monument to Kitty. Later the school also allowed both boys and girls and it graduated many. Milton Hershey died at the age of 88 and he was missed terribly. His chocolates are still made to this day. There is now an amusement park in Hershey, Pennsylvania that a lot of people visit each year where kids can buy all the Hershey products imagineable. And they can ride rides, pack there own gear full of Hershey's Kisses, and much more. So if you would like to learn more about Milton Hershey and his work, his life, and his dreams then I suggest you read this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.