Milton Snavely Hershey (1857-1945) established the Lancaster Caramel Company in 1885; he visited Chicago’s World Columbian Exposition in 1893 and became fascinated with the German chocolate-making machine that he saw there. Hershey alleged said at this time, “Caramels are just a fad, but chocolate is a permanent thing.” Hershey went on to become one of the most famous chocolate makers in the world.
The quotation has been cited in print only since 1967. The book The Hershey Story (1950) by Joseph Richard Snavely does not contain the famous Hershey quotation. It appears unlikely—based on the evidence—that the quotation is accurate.
Wikipedia: Milton S. Hershey
Milton Snavely Hershey (September 13, 1857 – October 13, 1945) was an American confectioner, philanthropist, and founder of The Hershey Chocolate Company and the “company town” of Hershey, Pennsylvania.
He was honored by the United States Postal Service with a 32¢ Great Americans series (1980–2000) postage stamp.
Lancaster Caramel Company
Returning to Lancaster in 1886, Hershey established the Lancaster Caramel Company, which quickly became an outstanding success. Utilizing a caramel recipe he had obtained during his previous travels, his company soared to the top. It was this business that established him as a candy maker, and set the stage for future accomplishments.
Hershey became fascinated with the machinery to make German chocolate exhibited at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition by J. M. Lehman Co. of Dresden, Germany, and bought the equipment for his company.
Hershey Trust Company
Milton S. Hershey
Though his caramels were selling well and the business grew steadily, Milton Hershey felt that the market for caramels was a temporary one. “Caramels are just a fad,” he said, “but chocolate is a permanent thing.” He wanted to concentrate on making chocolate. So on August 10, 1900, Milton Hershey sold the Lancaster Caramel Company for $1 million. Hershey surrendered his Lancaster factory, the machinery, his formulas, and the “Crystal A” trademark. But he kept his right to make chocolate and all his chocolate-making machinery, and he rented a wing of the factory to continue making chocolate. At the time, milk chocolate was considered a luxury item - it was handmade, expensive and only sold in specialty shops. Milton Hershey was confident that he could not only mass-produce chocolate, but make it affordable for everybody.
7 September 1967, Orrville (OH) Courier Crescent, pg. 5, cols. 5-6:
Caramels Considered Only A Fad;
Hershey Switches To Chocolates
By LO O. WEISS
Then and there (1893 Chicago Columbian Exposition—ed.), he (Milton Hershey—ed,) said: “Frank, I’m going to make chocolate. Caramels are only a fad; chocolate is a permanent thing.”
Chocolate, an Illustrated History
By Marcia Morton andFrederic Morton
New York, NY: Crown Publishers
At that moment Milton Hershey seemed to know that he had found his destiny. “Caramels are only a fad,” he told a companion. “Chocolate is a permanent thing. I’m going to make chocolate.”
The Hershey, Pennsylvania Cookbook:
Fun Treats and Trivia from the Chocolate Capital of the World
By Marilyn Odesser-Torpe
Guilford, CT: ThreeForks
Some people quote Milton Hershey as saying, “Caramels are only a fad. Chocolate is a permanent thing.” Others claim he never uttered those words. Regardless, he became enamored with the cacao bean-based sweet when, during a visit to 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago, he spotted—and purchased—some German-made chocolate-making machinery.
Milton Hershey: Young Chocolatier
By M.M. Eboch
New York, NY: Aladdin Paperbacks (Simon & Schuster)
Over the next few weeks, Milton kept returning to the Machinery Building, and the chocolate factory. In the end, he made a decision. “The caramel business is a fad. But chocolate is something we will always have. It is a food as well as a candy.” When he was ready to leave Chicago, he went to the chocolate display. “I want to buy your factory.”
Lehmann smiled. “We will have machines shipped from Germany at once.”
Recipe (Food & Beverage Marketing)
Chocolate vs. Caramel Morsel
Posted on August 27, 2012 by Recipe
“Caramels are only a fad. Chocolate is a permanent thing.” — Milton Snavely Hershey
New York City • Food/Drink • (1) Comments • Tuesday, October 23, 2012 • Permalink
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