I read the biography of Milton S. Hershey about 10 years ago. The smallish city that I grew up in didn’t have a decent bookstore despite having the 2nd largest university in Idaho. So I read and re-read the 8 foot section of the library dedicated to business over and over again. So when we had a break in our schedule and our boss asked us if there was any place we wanted to go I didn’t hesitate and responded: Hershey, PA!
What I loved about Milton’s story was not only did he make a fortune from chocolate but he built an entire town from nothing. He made is first million by selling his caramel business to his competitor and introduced America to milk chocolate. He bought up a bunch of land in Pennsylvania and built his factory along with a street of houses for his employees in which he sold to them at the same price it cost to build it. During the depression when so many were without work Mr. Hershey decided to expand to provide jobs. When he inquired about a steam shovel on one of the work sites he was told it could do the work of 40 men. He responded “get rid of the shovel and hire 40 men.”
His real legacy and whom he left his fortune to in way of stocks was his school for boys. It’s has since expanded to both girls and boys, taking care of not only their education but their health and character. Every child that graduates gets a one hundred dollar bill and a Hershey bar and now college tuition.
During our stay we were able to get a guided tour through the city stopping at all the places I had read about. As well as make our own custom chocolate bars and participate in a chocolate tasting. We also were able to meet up with the incredibly cute Kissmobile! As I check Hershey, PA off my bucket list, I can’t help but think how sweet our lives are 🙂