The November 1919 issue of included an ad from the Racine Confectioners Manufacturing Company for the “Racine Chocolate Depositor,” a machine that was for making ” Chocolate Kisses and Stars…
cast on metal covered plaques without the use of molds of any kind….plain tubes for kisses, or with tubes for 5-6-8-10-12 point stars. Weiscopf of New York advertised a “Chocolate ‘Kiss’ foil Wrapping Machine” and boasted that it was “in constant operation in several of the largest chocolate manufacturing plants in the United States.” This is most likely they machine Hershey’s used, a machine that also allowed them to include the distinctive paper plume peeking out of the foil wrapper.
And in 1910 when the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture examined 336 candy samples for purity and accurate labeling, 13 of those candies were described as “chocolate kisses,” a generic category.
Only one of those candies was a “chocolate bud.” It wasn’t until after the end of WWI that the term “kiss” seemed to be increasingly associated with the chocolate drop.
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No one alive today was witness to that first chocolate blob, or the “eureka” moment when someone shouted “It’s a Kiss!A 1911 publication suggesting ideas for money-making proposed that a woman going into the candy business might stock her store with “the finest chocolate buds, marshmallows, and different size cakes of the best milk chocolate.” In contrast, the term “chocolate kisses” could mean just about anything small and chocolate flavored.In addition to references to candy, I found the term in late nineteenth and early twentieth century cook books to name different sorts of cookies.When people talked about “chocolate buds” in the 1900s, its pretty clear that they are talking about Wilbur’s product or something very similar.A 1914 recipe for an ice cream sundae, for example, suggests sprinkle of “chocolate buds” on top.The fact is, back in 1907 you had your choice of kisses. Madden & Co NY); Nethersole Kisses, Moonlight Kisses (United States Candy Co, Cleveland); Elfin Kisses (Caldwell Sweet Co, Bangor Maine); Heckerman’s Lucky Kisses: 5 cent box “assorted selected flavors.” My personal favorite wasn’t around in 1907, but I’ll mention it anyway since we’re on the topic of Kisses.