Chocolate and Cocoa Nourishing Foods


First edition of Hershey’s “educational” broadside about the production of chocolate.

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This incredible visual compendium of chocolate was published in 1933 by the Hershey Chocolate Corporation of Hershey, Pennsylvania. One of America’s most iconic brands got its start by candy manufacturer Milton Hershey in Lancaster in 1894, who, at that time, focused on making caramels with fresh local milk. Wholesale chocolate was also part of the business, eventually justifying the creation of its own department within the company.

A new recipe for milk chocolate was formulated in 1899, prompting the construction of a new plant in Hershey’s hometown of Derry Church, later renamed after the man who invested so much in the city. Popularity and consumption exploded, and by Hershey’s death in 1945 the candy has become ubiquitous across the country, even around the globe, with the inclusion of Hershey bars in WWII field rations.

The wonderful broadsheet highlights the worldwide components of Hershey’s production process. The central map shows sources of cacao shipped from West Africa, South America, and the Caribbean, with an accompanying text marveling at the benefits of international trade. “With our present highly developed systems of communication and transportation, we have become neighbors with the world, all of us helping to feed, clothe, and serve one another.”

Below the map can be seen a life-sized image of the precious pod, while some of Hershey’s most popular products are pictured immediately underneath. ‘The Story of Cacao’ and ‘The Lands of Cacao’ described the history and geography of chocolate, respectively. One excerpt from the latter reads, “The villages or settlements on the West Coast of Africa, from which a large quantity of the finest cacao comes, are rather primitive…It is a very unhealthful country for white people, and most of the cacao plantations are native owned. These are members of the Youruba tribe, a highly developed negro race, who have shown a marked ability in trade and agriculture.”

An amusing chart at the bottom authoritatively presents the ‘Comparative Food Value of Milk Chocolate’, with little regard to nutritional impact. On either side of the sheet, eight captioned illustrations show the process of manufacturing milk chocolate, from the collection of cacao pods to molding the bars. Of particular interest is #2, which shows a group of West African women extracting the beans individually by hand. Each pod, after being opened with a special knife or machete, contains between 20 and 50 beans, and approximately 400 beans are necessary to create one pound of chocolate. The all-important drying process takes several days and is mentioned, but not illustrated. According to a 2018 article by Auburn University’s Center for Ethical Organizational Cultures,

“With the majority of the global cocoa supply coming from Africa, the need for workers on plantations never dwindles, which has brought about the thriving business of child labor, slavery, and human trafficking across African borders. Many cocoa firms do not own the cocoa plantation and pay the land owner 50-66 percent of each year’s crop. To keep costs low, farmers often use their own family members as a source of labor.”

The sheet is very scarce and possibly unrecorded, as I’ve been unable to find any examples in OCLC and the map is not cataloged in Rumsey or other online repositories. WorldCat does reference two examples of a later version, published in 1944, at the University of Miami and the American Geographical Society Library at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. A third edition, published in 1955, was previously sold by Barry Ruderman Antique Maps, but the only reference to the original 1933 edition I have been able to locate is from a catalog of copyright entries from that year.

Sources: AGSL 050 E-1944; Auburn University; 1955 Example at Barry Ruderman Antique Maps;

Map Details

Publication Date: 1933

Author: Hershey Chocolate Corporation

Sheet Width (in): 37.5

Sheet Height (in): 48.5

Condition: B

Condition Description: Single color lithographed sheet mounted on linen and affixed to original black wooden rollers. Moderately creased throughout from where previously rolled, with a tiny chips along the sides and very minimal paper loss in the extreme corners, adjacent to the rollers. Half circle damp stains confined to the left margin. Good to very good condition overall.


1 in stock