Hershey: Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life of Wealth,

Hershey: Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life of Wealth,



10 thoughts on “Hershey: Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire, and Utopian Dreams

  1. Kelly Kelly says:

    35 starsAfter reading Secretariat I wanted to learn about the families that made their fortunes in what Mark Twain coined The Gilded Age and became investors in the Thoroughbred industry Milton Snavely Hershey definitely a gambling man though not a race horse owner he was a freuenter of casinos around the world and bet heavily on races was one of those men The age in which he became a titan was simply fascinating This is the age of the Gold Rush the Civil War the Panics which led to mass deficits at banks of corporate mergers like the National Biscuit Company Nabisco of the concept of middle management and management science of company bonuses and profit sharing and all the way up through America's takeover of Cuba from Spain World War I the roaring 20s and the Wall Street Stock Market Crash in October 1929 Hershey across his 88 years lived through some of the most tumultuous times in American history and rose to captain one of America's most successful companies preserving its wealth and its charitable works against all odds But before he met with incredible success he failed time and time again from his first candy shop at age 19 and all the way through his 20s with ventures from Colorado to Philadelphia The fact that he continued to persist to experiment and to reinvent his product is astonishing; the fact that he borrowed heavily from his mother's wealthy Lancaster PA based family is a luxury that most his age didn't have Interestingly enough it was only when the Snavelys refused to continue to bankroll MS after nearly a decade of failures did he succeed in creating the brand of chocolate still on the shelves today in its signature brown and silver wrapper Some of the other American companies which gained in wealth influence and market share during this time includes Kelloggs Heinz Wrigley Coca Cola Mars and Nabisco many of whom were Hershey's customers acuiring cocoa and other products from his vertically integrated business Overseas Hershey rose in parallel to Cadbury and Nestle but interestingly never attempted to establish the Hershey brand in foreign markets unlike Coca Cola which rode their US Army contract into the establishment of bottling factories everywhere soldiers were basedInteresting to note one of the things which really stands out in Hershey versus today's businessmen think Steve Jobs Elon Musk is the concept that shy wholesome charity minded men were the ideal heads of corporations because at the end of the day People preferred to buy candy from a nice man one who was a benevolent figurehead who remained in the background of all of the press surrounding his brandWhile not the most exciting book McCullough's John Adams absolutely broke the mold the amount of research that has gone into this book and the well written and easy style employed by D'Antonio means that this type of non fiction book will never go below 3 stars for me An enjoyable slice of American history and an interesting look into the business practices that built America's fearsome corporations


  2. Dan Dan says:

    A fascinating read about the rise of an icon that came to prominence during the latter part of the Gilded Age Milton Hershey was the industrious child of a serious and devoted mother and a father who was a bit of a flim flam artist In this regard Milton's upbringing was similar to John Rockefeller except that Milton was not so pious and his mother's family had some money to invest in Milton's enterprises of which several ended in bankruptcy Hershey without a college education goes on to build one of the world's biggest chocolate empires The story of how he did it is explained in the book and is compelling His success was largely the result of hard work and knowledge that he gained as he relocated to many cities across the country refining the confectionary craft and honing his business skills After the success of his Lancaster Caramel company made him a millionaire Milton was able to expand into the chocolate business and after the turn of the century in a utopian vision built an entire company town in remote Pennsylvania that he named Hershey He then set his mind to increasing profits further by evading the sugar trust that wielded so much power in the United States Eventually he bought sugar plants in Cuba to directly supply his factories with one of the key raw ingredients for his chocolate Taking place in his later years there were strikes for better wages in the 1930's that resulted in violence Those responsible for the violence were anti union factions supported by Hershey After press coverage of the horrible events concessions were made on the part of Hershey's for better wages and benefits This occurred after Milton relinuished daily operations to those much younger than the octogenarian Milton Hershey was an imperfect man as he had a gambling habit and went to great lengths to hide his lavish lifestyle by choosing to take freuent trips to Europe and Cuba to avoid the scrutiny of bad press But he was hardly considered ruthless in comparison to the other Gilded Age billionaires Since his rise to fortune came later he likely learned than a few lessons from the press coverage of Ford and Rockefeller Hershey also had a warm side as evidenced by when he opened up an orphanage in Hershey He eventually left his fortune to the orphanage in a trust after his death The trust has since grown to an endowment worth than 12 billion dollars The last several chapters in the book are about the trust that lived on after Milton's death The threats of selling Hershey's to Wrigley the court battles and the effects on the town's people and employees of a company that are so heavily intertwined all made for an interesting read Although a biography this book is an excellent historical read that fills a knowledge gap with a vivid story of how a giant modern company was founded and prospered in the first half of the 20th centuryI rated the book 45 stars and rounded up because the story is uniue engaging and involves nary a politician military hero entertainment icon or sports star


  3. Richard Richard says:

    A good solid biography of a man who was a lot interesting than I had ever realized As I was reading the book I found myself thinking of Milton Hershey as a benevolent dictator Then late in the book someone was uoted as saying that the town of Hershey was a philanthropic dictatorship which is probably a little bit of a better term Hershey was clearly a man who wanted to do good but I don't think I would have liked living under his thumb I would have resented the way he imposed his sense of morality on his workers even during their time away from the factory I wish the author had managed to uncover information about Mrs Hershey the syphilitic spouse who may or may not have been a former prostitute Michael D'Antonio does a very good job of doing one thing that I think is essential for a good biography he not only describes the life of his subject but the context of the times in which he lived And he does it in a way that makes sense to the story When he goes off on a seeming tangent about the 1893 Chicago Exposition for example he ends up tying it back to Hershey's life but he barely mentions the Spanish American War which had little impact on Hershey I've read a few poorly edited history books this year and as a result I appreciate a well edited book all the Oh and I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover but what a great cover this book has I had to resist the urge to nibble on the book as I was reading it The only way the cover could have been better would be if the publisher found a way to make it actually smell like chocolate


  4. Mary Mary says:

    It was interesting to read about the life of Milton Hershey and how the Hershey empire was formed Mr Hershey was a brilliant entrepreneur and philanthropist It is good to see his spirit still lives on in Hershey PA I have read one other book by this author and in both books he tends to present dis jointed facts without any smooth transition between facts It also appears as though the author gets off the subject of the book and begins a discussion of a closely related topic before returning back to the subject of the book I found this to be disruptive to the story line


  5. Orsolya Orsolya says:

    Growing up in Ohio my childhood friends would go to the next door state of Pennsylvania and indulge themselves in family vacations to Hershey PA Although I was never privy to the amazing confectionary capital; the Hershey brand holds a special place in my heart Michael D’Antonio presents a personal portrait of the man behind the company in “Hershey Milton S Hershey’s Extraordinary Life of Wealth Empire and Utopian Dreams”Despite its sweet topic “Hershey” suffers from a slow and disjointed start focusing on history in the Pennsylvania region and Hershey’s parents versus on Milton himself Although D’Antonio attempts to use this approach to reveal Milton’s background and moral values; it fails to hold attention Plus much of it is chunky chronologically a paragraph may begin with “Ten years earlier” and backtrack completely; therefore leaving unanswered uestions and confusion It is uite clear that D’Antonio partook in extensive research However at some points it is too much as the text is clinical report like and lacking passion The areas directly concerning Milton are uite interesting but they aren’t consistent and are like blurbs “Hershey” tends to be filled with speculation—maybes probablys and so forth—making the business end strongly noted but the personal life of Milton uestionable Even though “Hershey” discloses a bit of Milton as it progresses; the focus continues to be on industry confections and consumer goods D’Antonio describes the environment effecting Milton or the Hershey brand rather than Milton’s feelingsreactions “Hershey” also suffers from some editing issues such as a lack of punctuation I counted three times which is disconcerting to some readers Poor editing is also displayed with weak transitions and repetition entire paragraphs are copypasted “Hershey” flows like a college research paper with some undergraduate errors D’Antonio doesn’t seem to know the heart of his work following tangents even as the pages dwindle However he does successfully show Milton’s positive and negatives by discussing employee strikes and unhappiness in details versus glossing over such topics The conclusion of “Hershey” is not particularly memorable with a spotlight on the businessfinancial state of the company instead of the man In fact D’Antonio revisits his introduction of the possible sale of the Hershey entity in 2002 This leaves an overall lack of opening up Hershey’s life and is instead a very generic look Other notes “Hershey” includes a photo insert black and white but doesn’t use a substantial amount of source material for those seeking thorough details “Hershey” is ‘okay’ as an introduction but is not inclusive in revealing Milton’s inner thoughtsworkings with the content of the book being eual to a Google search “Hershey” is suitable source material for a historical fiction novel why hasn’t anyone written a HF novel featuring Milton and his wife Catherine?


  6. Robert Robert says:

    There is the optimist and the cynic in all of us Throughout this book I had to keep pushing the cynical Bob back in the bottle only to have cynical Bob try to escape again and again I was actually able to contain my cynicism finally You have to either read this book or know the story of Milton Hershey In the midst of an ugly industrial world filled with slime bag industrialists stood Milton Hershey He built a business without trampling on his employees built a town founded a homeschool for orphans This man was revered by the town citizens He did amazing things for his town and his employees That said his employees ultimately unionized his factories As benevolent as he was his ear was apparently not to the ground at the shop floor He surprisingly hired to run his factory a former Ford Motor Co executive to run his plant Ford was notoriously anti union and so was this guy Hershey was also no fan of unions This came back to bite him in the ass You cannot become this wealthy without an ego and he had one He also had a penchant for gambling When you are filthy rich you get to spend lots of money I did not begrudge for one moment the money he spent for his family and self One of the great things about a book club is that you read books you would never be on your radar screenI highly recommend this book


  7. Todd Stockslager Todd Stockslager says:

    What would Milton Do?Milton Hershey would build the biggest chocolate company in the world in 1947 just before he died his utopian experiment in candy and community building made 90% of the chocolate sold in the United States This is the story neither authorized nor sponsered by the company according to the book jacket of Hershey's intrepid life his first two candy companies failed his fabulously successful company which he started after selling his third and first successful startup but before he knew how to make a chococolate bar with the flavor and marketability he needed to succeedand his own private utopia buying up thousands of acres of central PA farmland Herhey built his namesake town company orphanage and other business aorund his philanthropic dictatorship as an alumnus of the Hershey School called it D'Antonio tells the story with a light touch never delving deeply into arcane personal or corporate twists than the casual reader needs or wants And despite the cover claim he certainly never treats Hershey harshly maintaining a reasoned objectiveness about a man who like his vision or not left an overwhelmingly positive legacy


  8. Chris Chris says:

    Proving once again that if you made a movie about a fictional person and put them through all the trials and tribulations and failures before reaching success that no one would belive it the story of Milton Hershey gives you a good ride through perseverance If you have ever wondered about the life and story behind this empire and what went into that kiss that you are about to eat then this is a good read for you We take for granted the name of Hershey in the world but there were many times when it would not have happened but for a little blood seat and tears of the man behind the chocolate


  9. Laura Lee Laura Lee says:

    Milton Hersey was mainly known as a benevolent and nice man but he was than that He had his ornery side too firing people on a whim He developed the utopian town of Hersey in 1903 He was good and mostly generous to the town tho he made some serious mistakes He was ambitious and developed Heresy chocolate to make millions At one point Heresy supplied 90% of America's chocolate All this from a young man that started out making caramels I enjoyed the book very much learning the private side of a millionaire I mostly read it because my husband and I are going to spend a day in Heresy at Christmas But it's an entertaining book for anyone who likes chocolate


  10. Sean Sean says:

    The success of Milton Hershey was a case of right placeright connectionsright time than anything His parents split while he was young and though his father was something of a scoundrel this story's most colorful interesting character his mother came from wealthy stock Well off aunts and uncles were uite willing to bail him out of a jam through infusions of cash or elbow grease and to set him back up again after one strikeout or another MS wasn't even a particularly brilliant chocolatier He knew where to point his RD team but failed to personally crack the code of lasting milk chocolate and repeatedly floundered in attempts to introduce an additional line of product Still D'Antonio's account is extremely positive painting Milton in a light that's a bit suspect given the constant glowing endorsements To be sure Hershey made some radical progressive moves in his time his dedication to the boarding school that still bares his name is most impressive but he also held fierce grudges and refused to acknowledge the employees most responsible for his success These aspects of his personality are merely noted and hand waved excused as an eccentricity When strikebreakers turn violent in the late 30s for example the book notes that Hershey watching from a comfortable distance reportedly shed a tear Otherwise I guess he'd look like too much of a monster It's a mildly interesting but not revelatory read I took particular interest in the influences and inspirations that led to the founding of Hershey Pennsylvania and the logistics of managing the city in the ensuing century


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hershey: Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire, and Utopian Dreams ➽ [Reading] ➿ Hershey: Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire, and Utopian Dreams By Michael DAntonio ➲ – Centrumpowypadkowe.co.uk The name Hershey evokes many things chocolate bars the company town in Pennsylvania one of America's most recognizable brands But who was the man behind the name In this compelling biography Pulitzer The name Hershey evokes S. Hershey's PDF È many things chocolate bars the company town in Pennsylvania one of America's most recognizable brands But who was the man behind the name In this compelling biography Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Michael D'Antonio gives us the real life rags to riches story of Milton S Hershey a largely uneducated businessman whose idealistic sense of purpose created an immense financial empire a town and a legacy that lasts to this day Hershey the son of a minister's daughter and an irresponsible Hershey: Milton PDF or father who deserted the family began his career inauspiciously when the two candy shops he opened both went bankrupt Undeterred he started the Lancaster Caramel Company which brought him success at last Eventually he sold his caramel operation and went on to perfect the production process of chocolate to create a stable consistent bar with a long shelf lifeand an American icon was born Hershey was than a Milton S. Hershey's Extraordinary Life PDF \ successful businessman he was a progressive thinker who believed in capitalism as a means to higher goals Milton S. Hershey's ePUB ↠ He built the world's largest chocolate factory and a utopian village for his workers on a large tract of land in rural Pennsylvania and used his own fortune to keep his workers employed during the Great Depression In addition he secretly willed his fortune to a boys' school and orphanage both of which now control a vast endowment Extensively researched and vividly written Hershey is the fascinating story of this uniuely American visionary.