Day 6 | Wednesday, July 1
Miles Driven: 344 / 2008
Miles Hiked: 0 / 13.23
Money Spent: 272 / 760
When Milton Hershey switched over to making chocolate, he built a new factory and a factory town. Unlike those factory towns that kept the employees poor, Hershey wanted his workers to thrive. He built parks and playgrounds, schools, and provided affordable housing. During the Great Depression, Hershey started a building campaign to keep workers employed: "Mr. Hershey watched intently as two huge steam shovels tore apart the earth [to build a hotel]. His foreman told him, “These machines do the work of 40 men.” And Mr. Hershey simply replied, “Take them off. Hire 40 men.”
He built a "town" in Cuba to grow sugar cane. During the off-season, he kept the factory going making rope and other stuff.
One cool thing I noticed at the museum was that all the young docents were reading books. The kids said they were allowed to (which is in keeping with Hershey's understanding of the importance of education).
One of Billy Joel's famous songs is Allentown,
but it was actually about Bethlehem. "While Bethlehem Steel is what influenced the song, Joel has said he thought "Allentown" sounded better and was easier to rhyme."
Bethlehem is home to Bethlehem Steel which was one of the world's largest steel producing and shipbuilding companies. It went out of business, which is what Billy Joel was singing about, but the factory is still there.
It was my intention to stay at a hotel from the beginning and I should have stayed at the Hotel Bethlehem, but a basic room costs $200 a night. So, using Booking.com, I found a place called Knights Inn for $77. (There wasn't a Motel 6 nearby.) I consider that to be a lot, so I figured it was nice.
When I walked into the lobby, I was instantly assailed by the stench, but I had already paid online. I went to my room and finally realized that the stench in the room was from the a/c. There were people running up and down the hall, fighting in the rooms nearby, and then I heard people shooting of fireworks in the parking lot. I looked out the window from the 2nd floor to where I was parked and saw people just sitting in their cars in the parking lot (and people loitering around on foot.) I packed my stuff, went downstairs, told them about what a mess the place was, and left. (The lady did apologize.)
I went back online and found a Best Western for $106.
And back to Allentown, this link may show you a street view (and then you can go up and down the road).