— From the pages of Taysted #03
In Philadelphia, Mr. Henry Oscar (H.O.) Wilbur teamed up with business partner Samuel Croft to make molasses and hard candies in 1865 under the name Croft & Wilbur. Although they produced using merely a kettle, coal fire, buckets, and a marble slab to make their candies, demand for their products quickly grew! It was at this time that H.O. Wilbur decided to focus his attention on learning the manufacturing of chocolate. This would require Croft & Wilbur to search for new locations to create and sell hard candies and chocolate separately.
H.O. Wilbur & Sons moved their chocolate business from Philadelphia to Lititz, Lancaster County in the early 1900s. Wilbur Chocolate products are still manufactured in Lititz today and Wilbur is now a strong brand for Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate, Inc. Cargill acquired Wilbur Chocolate Company in 1992. Millions of pounds of chocolate and confectionery products are produced from the cocoa bean and supplied to manufacturers of candy, snack food, bakery, and dairy products throughout North America each year. But it is the infamous melt-in-your mouth Wilbur Buds created by Wilbur in 1894 that give the Wilbur brand its popularity. When you bite into one of these delicious morsels of joy—milk or dark chocolate—you experience a little bit of history on your taste buds.
If you love history and adore chocolate, you can’t miss stopping by the Wilbur Chocolate Candy Americana Museum and Store! The museum area features delightful exhibits of antique chocolate molds, tins, and boxes, as well as early machinery, marble slabs, and copper kettles used by chocolatiers from every generation. You can enjoy looking through a collection of 150 European and Oriental hand painted porcelain chocolate pots. Be sure to watch the educational video that takes you on a journey of how the cocoa bean becomes chocolate, right before you visit the candy kitchen window. Here, you can watch the seasoned candy makers create decadent fudge and handmade specialties covered in nothing else but rich Wilbur chocolate!
With no admission charge, free Wilbur Bud samples, and an incredible array of chocolates and gifts available in the store, the Wilbur Chocolate Candy Americana Museum and Store is a place where you can submerge yourself in chocolate history – guilt free! Then, after you visit, you can refresh your chocolate stash by ordering online at www.wilburbuds.com. Awesome.
Wilbur Chocolate Candy Americana Museum & Store
48 North Broad Street, Lititz PA