Necco (New England Confectionary Company) began its life in 1847, with Olive R Chase's invention of the lozenge cutter candy machine. Fascinating history of the company here. This is a Boston company arguably most well known for the Necco Wafer, but since Valentine's Day is round the corner I thought that a look at the company's Sweethearts (Conversation Hearts) was in order. These are the world's number one selling non chocolate Valentine's candy. Impressive!
City Sisters Shop Top Right: Piles of Sweathearts ready to be mixed and boxed, Necco Bottom Left: Necco Factory, Cambridge MA (Image by Jill Robidoux, Flickr) Bottom Right: Cross Stitch Kits by Slipcover Your Life
I am willing to bet that we all passed a Sweetheart to someone in our youth, leaving it up to the candy to deliver the message we couldn't find the words for ourselves. They began life in 1866 and Necco has updated their Sweetheart Conversation Heart range continually, adding modern sayings to the mix over time. In 2010 they went back to the drawing board and asked the American public to redesign the sayings, resulting in a new generation of heart candies...."Tweet Me" anyone? LOL!