Schoolhouse Candy

“Working there was a rite of passage, an initiation into the world of work. From School House Candy one could move up to being a stringer, carder, or foot-press operator at one of the jewelry factories. My friends and my oldest sister described the scene to me. Down an endlessly turning conveyor belt would flow a river of one type of candy, perhaps lemon yellow lollipops—yellow lollipops, yellow lollipops, yellow lollipops, yellow lollipops, yellow lollipops, yellow lollipops. You stared at those yellow lollipops and thought you could never in your life be as sick of anything as you were of the sight of yellow lollipops. And then you would see that the yellow lollipops had been replaced by red lollipops. At first there would be relief. Something different to look at! And then, after a few minutes of watching red lollipops, red lollipops, red lollipops, red lollipops, red lollipops, red lollipops, red lollipops coming down the conveyor belt, you would find yourself longing to see something else, anything else—even a yellow lollipop.”

–  Excerpted and adapted from Elegy for a Disease: A Personal and Cultural History of Polio (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2006). by Anne Finger.

 

 

After World War II, Hope Webbing suffered financial loss. In 1956, New York textile operator George A Hovarth purchased the plant and sold it to HW Realty of Providence – owned by the Rosen family – who also owned the School House Candy Company. HW Realty leased half the plant back to Hope Webbing, set up a candy factory in the preparing building, and used part of the weave shed complex for warehouse space. School House Candy was purchased by Sherwood Brands and then left the building. Hope Webbing (now Hope Global) left in 1995 for a modern facility in Cumberland.

 

 

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