Hooton Chocolate Company 1897-1961

The Hooton Chocolate Company was founded in 1897 and was purchased, in 1961, by the Ambrosia Chocolate Company of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Although the factory remained active for many years, 1961 was its last year of independent operation.img_5111 In 1964, Ambrosia was merged into W.R. Grace & Company. Grace sold off Grace Chocolate, as the division was called, to Archer Daniels Midland in the first quarter of 1997.The site of the Hooton Chocolate Company, at 351 North 5th Street ,  has been redeveloped.

Featured in this blog is a cigarette lighter, most probably a marketing give-away. I find it amazing how many things were advertised on matchbooks, ashtrays and lighters. More interesting still is many of the advertised places and products were not directly related to the use of tobacco. However, smoking was so popular that advertising on something related to smoking was a very good way to get your message out there.

21 thoughts on “Hooton Chocolate Company 1897-1961

    1. I remember buying hooton candy bars for about 2 cents, probably sometime between 1945 and 1950 while living in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.


    2. I remember the chocolate factory very well I lived at 363 n 5th st right next door to the factory and once in a while would get a free bar from the workers .the bars were about 15 in long 3in wide and about 2in thick the chocolate was very harduse to have to shave it with a nife to get a hand full but mom use to melt it in milk and make chocolate milk with it.I t was the best After they put a soft ice cram place on the corner of park ave and 5th st we would buy the ice cream and go down the street and sometimes the workers would put melted chocolate over them for us.


  1. I’m a “Picker” just like on the TV Show “AMerican Pickers” and I just stumbled upon Two GIant Metal Chocolate Molds that read “HOOTON CHOCOLATE FACTORY NEWARK NEW JERSEY”. Each of these are about 19″ x 11″ x 3″. I believe they are 14lb Molds. Since these Mold Pans are embossed, that wording would have been on the giant chocolate bars. I’ll be listing them on Ebay very soon if anyone is interested. Or, email me at regalbeaglerelics@gmail.com.


    1. That was the size of the bars we use to get from the workers.also I heard at the time that those bars were sold to the factory’s that made chocolate covered candy like mars bars Ana’s Clark bars and a lot of others


  2. My grandfather, Robert Thompson Hooton, operated the company until the early1930s. Following his death, my grandmother tried to continue marketing the Hooton brand of cocoa. She and my mother moved to California in 1946.

    I was at a DAR meeting about 10 years ago. Discussion turned to family businesses. I mentioned my grandfather. To my great surprise an older woman at our table said, “I remember Hooton Chocolate. It was very fine chocolate”. Small world.


      1. Hooton Chocolate began producing Chocolate in bulk for other Candy companies like M&M Mars, chocolate chips for Nabisco, and Many other Chocolate companies that you would by every day on the retail market.
        They were owned by WR Grace Co and were part of the Ambrosia Chocolate Company in Milwaukee Wisconsin. The Newark Co closed in 1995


      1. My uncle john Gizzo worked only for this company over 45 yrs. I remember the large bars is there a similar quality chocolate today? Sabino_ Iovino @comcast. Net


      1. Sure do worked from 1977-1987 best Job I ever had all the people were close. Ask me anything you need to know. Charlie Dolce was the VP of sales when I joined the Co Jack Brunner the Sales MGR.
        Did you say your Family was Part owner of the Company?
        of the work force.


      2. Hi Denise,
        Is there anything in particular that you wanted to know.
        When I began working for them in 1977 a good part of the work force worked there for 45-50 years.
        I can tell you exactly what you would like to know and answer any questions you may have.


  3. I remember smelling that chocolate from the corner of Park and 7th Street. That was once the best neighborhood on this planet. Well before the Creeps in government put their foot on everybody’s neck.


  4. My Uncle John worked for Hooton Chocolate for almost 67 yrs! I remember how he purchased blocks of chocolate and melted them
    Into molds of a holiday theme- like bunnies- at Easter! He gave them to family members


  5. I worked for Hooton Chocolate in the office as inside sales and then VP of sales from 1977-1987
    The weight of those molds that Chris Sims mentioned was 10lbs each.
    Great place to work.


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