Reinhardt Family History

Memories of Eggs and Chickens

Stories from Neil Reinhardt

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Memories
of Eggs & Chickens

CANDY

When friends of my folks came to visit they always brought a little bag of horehound candy for us kids. It was a hard rock candy flavored with Horehound, a member of the mint family. The juice is extracted from the plant and used in cough medicine and cough drips. It has a taste all its own. Why it was ever used to flavor candy I do not know.

When I was a kid and went to the grocery store with my folks, the first thing the grocer did was give each one a stick of candy. Of course he was well repaid for it by a large grocery order. Later on when we kids had a few pennies, it was hard for us to decide what candy to get. One would point and say "I like that", another would pick a different one, or "No, no, that's too small". Girls would like the red ones because they made their lips red. Some chose an all day sucker. (They never really lasted all day.)

I always had a sweet tooth. My older sister just had to say "Crack me some hickory nuts and I'll make a cake or some candy". It was a job I did in a hurry.

From 1927 until 1936 I drove a milk truck, gathering milk from the farms and hauling it to Galloway-West where it was powdered or condensed. The job took a lot of energy, getting up at 5 o'clock, milking cows and doing chores before breakfast, then driving the truck and loading the milk from farmers. After pulling 100-125 pound milk cans from the cooling tanks, by noon I had become quite hungry. Having to get another load of milk and knowing I wouldn't get home for dinner until 1 o'clock or later, I'd stop at the store for a snack, bananas or a candy bar. There were no McDonalds at that time.

Now, during the Depression, candy bars were much larger than they are today, and most were only 5 cents. I especially like one made of peanuts and milk chocolate - Mr. Goodbar. The large one cost a few cents more and it was more than I could eat at one time, so I put the rest in the glove compartment for another day. It seemed, however, that when I was the most hungry the candy bar was gone, and I knew mice would not get at it. Having two younger brothers I had my suspicions. I sprinkled a little red pepper on the candy bar, then wrapping it carefully, put it back in the glove compartment. Someone did not like red pepper, so my candy bars were always safe after that.

About that time, to continue with sweet things, I met a girl at the Rainbow Gardens at a dance. We had several dates, and I found out that she worked at the Bonita Candy factory in the chocolate room. She helped make the Leaping Lena candy bar. Several cherries were put on a marshmallow mold, then it was put on a belt that ran through a machine. When it came out the other side it was coated with chocolate. Presto! A Leaping Lena! Chocolate cremes were coated the same way and put into one, two, and five pound boxes.

I thought if she had access to that much candy, that was the gal for me. One day I was in town on a rainy day and the darn car just happened to go down the street at the time she was walking home from work in the rain. I pulled up beside her and opened the door. After working with hot chocolate all day, she brought in the delicious aroma of chocolate with her. Now, after 56 years of wedded bliss, I still have my valentine...she brought me candy then, I bring her candy now.