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Last September, my family and I traveled to Hershey Pennsylvania, also known as the "Sweetest Place on Earth", where we indulged in large quantities of chocolates and countless spinning amusement park rides. At one point we took a chocolate tasting historical tour of the town which included the Hershey Kiss streetlights, the world's largest chocolate factory and the mansion of Milton Snavely Hershey.

Hershey was a remarkable man with a limited education who was always interested in the candy business. After spending four years as an apprentice, Hershey went on his own in 1876 to establish a candy shop in Philadelphia. Unfortunately for Hershey, despite all his hard work, the shop went under six years later as he could no longer cover all of the expenses. A second company he started in New York City likewise failed.

Amazingly, Milton Hershey, the chocolate manufacturer and founder of Hershey Foods Corp., found success after filing for bankruptcy due to the losses he sustained from the initial candy companies.

In deciding to declare bankruptcy, it was his intention to make a fresh start of it and head back home to Lancaster to try again. Upon Hershey's return home, he learned how to make caramels by using fresh, sweet condensed milk. The milk made the caramels tastier and provided them with a longer shelf life. At the time, caramel had been mixed with paraffin by most confectioners, to make it chewy.

In 1886 Hershey started the successful Lancaster Caramel Company. Hershey's "Crystal A" caramels were an instant hit.

In 1900 he sold the caramel company for a then staggering amount of one million dollars so he could concentrate on perfecting and producing fine milk chocolate. Hershey understood the growing market for chocolate and knew that his future was in chocolate production rather then caramels. Using the proceeds from the sale of the Lancaster Caramel Company, he built a factory in the farmland area where he was born, and created the Hershey Chocolate Company.

A financial crisis can happen to anyone. People from all walks of life, professions and backgrounds may encounter financial difficulties at one time or another. Bankruptcy gives you a chance to start over. The bankruptcy laws gave Milton Hershey a fresh start. Many people such as Milton Hershey have used their second chance to go on and accomplish great things that never would have been possible if they were permanently burdened with debt.

At Angiuli & Gentile, LLP, we have experience in eating chocolate and helping you through the bankruptcy process; from the initial intake, to the final discharge of your debts. Please contact us for an appointment if you are considering bankruptcy.

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