<p><b>By Jen Waters</b></p><p>You’ve eaten his candy bars, heard his name, and possibly visited his famous factory. But did you know that the founder of Hershey’s was also a person of deep faith? Indeed, Hershey’s faith history can tell us a lot about the maker of one of America’s favorite foods. Test your Hershey knowledge in this fun, informative quiz. </p>
Milton S. Hershey was born on September 13, 1857. From an early age, Veronica “Fanny” Snavely Hershey, who is known for wearing plain Reformed Mennonite clothes, taught her son, Milton, the Bible. In that era, many Mennonites emigrated from Europe to Central Pennsylvania.
Although Henry Hershey always loved learning and books, he is often characterized as a dreamer who searched for get-rich-quick schemes in oil and the silver mines—among other things, like cough drops.
As a youth, Milton S. Hershey hated working at a German newspaper in Lancaster, Pa. He was fired for dropping his straw hat onto the printing press.
Aunt Mattie, Milton’s mother’s sister, loaned Milton S. Hershey money in his early years of business, even through times of bankruptcy.
Milton S. Hershey’s Lancaster Caramel Company turned him into one of Lancaster’s most admired citizens.
Milton S. Hershey became interested in chocolate making at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago and later broke ground for a new chocolate factory.
Hershey’s Kisses, first introduced in 1907, have become one of the most popular candies in the United States. Fanny, Milton’s mother, used to hand wrap Hershey’s Kisses instead of sitting “idle.” Of course, only friends and family ate the Kisses Fanny handled. The Kisses sold on the market were hand wrapped in aluminum foil in the chocolate factory until they were eventually wrapped through automation.
When Kitty could not have children, Milton S. Hershey and his wife started the Hershey Industrial School for orphan boys in 1909. The school still exists today as the Milton Hershey School, also housing girls as well.
Each orphan boy received a Bible and his own Bible verse. Milton S. Hershey ran his orphanage on Christian principles and strived to teach each boy a useful trade.
According to Milton S. Hershey, he lived his life by the Golden Rule, Matthew 7:12: “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.” He hung a copy of the Ten Commandments in his High Point mansion.
Along with his chocolate factory in Hershey that turned a profit despite the Great Depression, Milton S. Hershey started a massive building program that created hundreds of jobs in the town. During the Depression era, he built the Hotel Hershey and the Hershey Sports Arena, among other landmarks, such as the Hershey Community Building.
Kitty investigated Christian Science healing when she was dying of a “locomotor ataxia,” the inability to control one’s body movements.
Milton S. Hershey gave the majority of his wealth in Hershey Chocolate Company stock and assets to the Hershey Industrial School’s Trust, $60 million.
By 1930, Milton S. Hershey gave away the majority of his Hershey mansion, High Point, to the Hershey Country Club. As one of the richest men of his generation, he lived in the small upstairs apartment in High Point until his death in 1945.
The original $60 million that Milton S. Hershey gave to the Hershey Industrial School’s Trust has grown to $6 billion. The Hershey Trust Company manages the income from The Hershey Company, Hershey Entertainment Resorts and Company (HERCO), and other investments that funds the Milton Hershey School.