Encyclopedia 2009

Heart of the Community: Hershey’s Community Building

Originally planned for 1916 and finally constructed during Hershey’s Great Building Campaign of the 1930s, the goal of the building was to provide entertainment and recreation, as well as to fulfill educational and civic functions for the entire town. World War I and subsequent financial challenges for Hershey Chocolate Company delayed its construction. Finally in […]

New Machinery for the Factory Installed

The Hershey Press issue dated September 17, 1909 carried a variety of articles about the community and Chocolate factory as well as printing ads from Hershey owned and independent businesses. A favorite column was titled: Hershey Briefs: Items About You, Your Neighbors and Things in General. Illnesses, individual’s trips to Harrisburg and Lancaster, comments about people who dropped in to […]

Hershey Press Launches

1909 Hershey, with big plans for its future, was still a modest community of about 250 people. While the chocolate factory employed several hundred people, most of the workers lived in the surrounding communities, using the Hershey trolley system to travel to work each day. Hershey Park was essentially a community park, the only ride […]

Honest Products: The Hershey Way

Hershey stood at the forefront of promoting the values and of the the Pure Food Law of 1906. This law, a major achievement of the Progressive Movement, protected consumers from being deceived or harmed by food products with false or deceiving labels. The national Pure Food movement inspired Pure Food Shows in cities across the […]

It’s Back to School!

Milton Hershey’s interest in and commitment to providing the town with quality public education led him to underwrite the cost of all the community’s public school buildings constructed in Hershey during his lifetime. Continuing that tradition, in 1954 The M.S. Hershey Foundation presented the Derry Township School District with a new elementary school. The new building […]

Cooling Off in the Summertime

For almost 60 years swimming at the Hershey Park Swimming Pool was a popular destination for visitors and local residents. Today, for many people, seeing the Lighthouse across the street from Chocolate World and the Hersheypark entrance evokes memories of swimming in the “giant” swimming pool, meeting friends, and teenagers staying late to listen the […]

Swinging to the Strains of Harry James

Hershey Park Ballroom was a popular venue for Big Bands during the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s. Virtually every nationally known Big Band played at the Park Ballroom, making it the leading dance floor in Central Pennsylvania. Dancing was sometimes a problem in the ballroom, despite its 190 foot length and 40 foot width. The crowds […]

Wish You Were Here…

The early 1900s saw a surge of popularity for postcards. The hobby of collecting picture postcards became the greatest collectible hobby that the World had ever known. The official figures from the U.S. Post Office for their fiscal year ending June 30, 1908, cite 677,777,798 postcards mailed. At that time the total population of the […]

Seeking Thrills: Hershey Park’s First Roller Coaster

Hershey celebrated its 20th anniversary in 1923, and Milton Hershey’s present to the town was a new roller coaster for Hershey Park.  Named the Wild Cat, it was nearly a mile in length and it had “more dips and deeper dips than any of like construction in America.” It was put into operation on June […]

Curry Mill Fire

Hershey published a weekly newspaper from 1909 to 1926. It is a wonderful resource for learning more about the community’s early years. Recently the Archives was able to have the newspaper digitized and indexed. The paper can be accessed through the Archives’ website, on the “Collections” page. The newspaper, The Hershey Press, was published under a variety of […]

Golf Legend: Ben Hogan

While Hershey is well known nationally for its iconic milk chocolate bar, Milton Hershey’s model town attracted much attention for many other reasons. Hershey Country Club, established in 1930, received national attention shortly after it was established through its choice of golf professionals to represent the club. Shortly after the club opened Henry Picard, one […]

Army-Navy ‘E’ Award

Hershey played a significant role on the home front supporting the war effort during World War II. In recognition of its outstanding efforts, Hershey Chocolate Corporation received the Army-Navy ‘E’ Production Award at a special ceremony held August 22, 1942. At the Award ceremony, Major General Edmond B.Gregory noted the company’s achievements stating, “The men […]

Batter Up! Baseball and Hershey

Hershey and baseball have been together for over a century. Soon after the opening of the Hershey Chocolate Factory in 1905, the community’s first baseball team was assembled by John Snavely. Hershey fielded more than one baseball team, particularly after the Y.M.C.A. was established in 1910. In addition to local community teams, there was also […]

Serving the Region: Hershey’s Service During the Three Mile Island Emergency

The accident at Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station was the most significant accident in the history of the American commercial nuclear power generating industry. Though no one was injured, the accident caused a partial core meltdown of the Unit 2 reactor. The accident occurred just a weeks after “The China Syndrome,” a popular movie […]

The Past is Prologue: Hershey Museum

The newest incarnation of the Hershey Museum, The Hershey Story was dedicated on January 30. But having a museum in our community is not new. Milton Hershey intended to make his community an interesting and enjoyable place to live, work, and visit. In addition to endowing a school for orphaned boys, Hershey contributed millions of dollars for […]

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