Monday, February 11, 2019

CONVERSATION HEARTS

While I do enjoy those cute little candy hearts, it's been a couple years since I have had any. I have fond memories of them from grade school, when we would have our little Valentine's Party. All us kids would be able to go take down our handmade decorated folder from the wall, in which the week prior, it would get filled with little valentines from the other kids, and some would even put the little hearts in their envelope. But have you ever heard the story behind them?
The story of conversation hearts began in 1847, when a Boston pharmacist named Oliver Chase longed for a way to get in on the apothecary lozenge craze. Lozenges were quickly gaining steam as the medicine conveyance of choice, and were also popular remedies for sore throats and bad breath. But making lozenges was complicated and time-consuming—the process involved a mortar and pestle, kneading dough, rolling it out, and cutting it into discs that would eventually become lozenges.
There had to be a better way, and Oliver came up with it. Inspired by the new wave of gadgets and tools that hit America as it industrialized, he invented a machine that rolled lozenge dough and pressed wafers into perfect discs. Oliver had inadvertently created America’s first candy-making machine, and before long, he had abandoned his pharmacy business to crank out miles of what would become New England Confectionery Company ,NECCO wafers.
Legend has it that Oliver’s NECCO wafers were carried by Civil War soldiers, and some speculate that the tradition of sending loving greetings to the troops morphed into the conversation heart, but those claims are hard to verify. What is clear is that as Oliver built his candy empire, his brother Daniel decided he wanted a piece of the action. Inspired by the growing market for Valentine’s cards, Daniel wondered if it would be possible to print sentimental messages on candy. In 1866, he figured out a way to print words on candy with vegetable dye during the cutting process.People loved conversation candies (they weren’t available in heart shapes until 1902 though, and their witty messages, which could stoke the flames of love or warn off flaky suitors.
Over the years, conversation hearts lost size, but gained many more phrases. NECCO estimates that it made nearly 100,000 pounds of the hearts each day throughout the year in preparation for Valentine’s Day. The oldest candy company Necco got bought out just recently, so it's the first time since the early 1900's there were no original candy hearts, as the new company didn't have the time to produce the quantities. But next year there will be back, since they also purchased the recipe for them. 

I still remember my first crush.There was one cute boy named Ian that was with me all through grade school.  I always looked forward to his Valentine
 I was always hoping for a little heart that said marry me...or at least do me...but alas...it never showed up.

33 comments:

  1. I cannot stand the taste of either NECCO wafers OR conversation hearts. but the history lesson was interesting.

    I had many crushes on guys in grade school, all unrequited.

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  2. How interesting, I never knew any of that. A little box of these conversation hearts was the first thing William ever gave me, so they are sentimental to me.

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  3. I have to say, I like the kinda dirty ones.

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  4. I remember looking for and analyzing candy hearts from certain crushes... :-)

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  5. Ohhh I’ve always wondered about these! I need to stay away from candy tho. And cookies. Damn muffin tops!

    XoXo

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    1. between hearts and next month shamrock shakes, tis wonder the mistress doesn't have 6 muffin tops.

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    2. Where the heck do the cookies come from? 🤓

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  6. Can't go wrong with those cute candies :)

    And I totally see you as Sally Brown pinning for a cute little lad. 

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  7. Too bad these are missing in 2019 due to the company changing hands. Just looking at them is making my mouth water and want some.

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  8. I have an addiction to this candy, I order them any time of the year. I never put it together with the Necco wafer...a favorite of both my grandparents.

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  9. Fun post! I had no idea that dated back so far...what a history they have. Beware the BRACH'S version... they don't taste nearly as good and is difficult to read the sayings. I got duped!

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  10. Poor Mistress. Ian never came through..but think of all the treats you've had since.....

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  11. love those little hearts. good thing they don't come in gin flavor.

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  12. I love those hearts but haven't had them in years. Did you know that Necco also made Necco Mary janes, Squirrell Nut Zippers, candy buttons, Sky Bars and Clark bars!

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  13. A fascinating and timely post! "Oh You Kid" was always my fave old timey candy heart saying.

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  14. I've always liked conversation hearts but never knew the history of them. Thanks for the interesting info.

    Being a diehard traditionalist, I prefer the old messages that used to be on the hearts - such as "True Love". It's irritating to see the new ones that say things like "Text Me".

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  15. I am wild for NECCO wafers, but never knew the connection to the little heart candies until now. As for a shortage for 2019, I'm sure there are still some floating around from my elementary school days, 50 years ago. They're practically indestructible and how would you know the difference?

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  16. I never knew any of this! What a great history lesson. As I think about it, I realize I never had a childhood crush (of my own age). My early crushes were always grown men... And Annette Funicello.

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    Replies
    1. You sound like me now Mitchell. I tended to like older men too.

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  17. We could do an "adult" version and let you write the words.

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  18. Ah the joys of childhood and a more innocent time. And I’m all for Maddie doing an XXX rated version of them. 👍🏻

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    Replies
    1. I'll get right on that Huntley and save you the best ones!!!

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    2. You’re a gem, Misterss, than you. I might even share them with Sixpence 😉

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    3. OK. Here are a few. Make it Hard, Suck that Dick, On Your Knees, French Kiss, Lick Me. On All Fours, Tie me Up...

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    4. Stop!!!! You'll get me hard next.

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    5. Thanks mistress. This will get us started 😎😉

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  19. Huh. Yeah, I remember doing that in grade school. I'd get two or three valentines - the rest of the class...well, they were the popular kids. :-)

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  20. I just asked my husband if he remembered Valentine's day in grammar school and he said he didn't remember much. I think it had to do with going to a Catholic school in 50s and 60s. Or maybe it was the drugs consumed later on that have erased my youthful memories. Thanks for the history lesson, sugar!xoxo

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    1. Oh lamchop, I wouldn't know anything about that!!!!!!!

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  21. Yeah, I remember those little candy hearts... too minty.

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  22. I haven't had these in years. But I think it's cute even that far back you had a crush in grade school.

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Go ahead darling, tell me something fabulous!

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