Confectionery opens at 110 Market Street
The first confectioner on this site was a gentleman by the name of Samuel Herring, who also had been operating a confectionery supplies wholesale business next door at 112 Market since the 1850s. The Herring family were well noted and sought after for their confectionery mastery; several Herrings operated on this very block going all the way back to the 1840s.
Benjamin Herring and Daniel Dengler form a partnership
Samuel’s son, Benjamin W. Herring, had been fighting in the War between the States on the Union side to uphold the cohesion of our Republic. When Benjamin returned from the war in 1865, he took over the business from his father. Samuel Herring had employed another confectioner by the name of Daniel S. Dengler. Benjamin saw in Daniel the mastery of his craft, as well as a man with strong business acumen.
Herring and Dengler partnered and sold confectionery goods wholesale from the site of 110 Market, including shelled almonds and peanuts, figs, glucose, dates, cocoanuts, chocolate liquor, and a host of other items. At some stage, Mr. Dengler was running the business on his own, engaging the fireworks trade as a seasonal sideline.
William T. Wescott purchases the Confectionery
The building at No. 110 Market Street was sold to a businessman named William T. Wescott, who had also operated a small chocolate factory on Spring Garden Street where, for some time, he was his only employee. A photograph of the building from 1907 proclaims “WHOLESALE - RETAIL.”
Wescott sells 110 Market Street to Edward Shane
William T. Wescott decided to move and expand and built a new chocolate factory in Camden, New Jersey. He sold the confectionery at 110 Market Street to an enterprising young man named
Edward R. Shane.
Mr. Shane engaged the Baltimore firm of Reinle & Salmon to craft elaborately carved cabinets, curved glass showcases and marble countertops to highlight the confections to the burgeoning retail trade. Also installed were stained glass transom windows above the storefront to beckon the passerby. Many of these architectural details have been restored and can still be seen in the shop today.
Edward Shane Jr. succeeds his father
Edward R. Shane Jr. purchased the business from his father. He oversaw ownership and maintenance of the store for another thirty years, always attentively dressed in tie and jacket. An old-timer who worked at the local hardware shop recalled Mr. Shane closing the candy shop during the sweltering summers each year to buy a couple of gallons of white lead paint in order to give the old-fashioned cabinetry a fresh whitewash.
1960s & 1970s
The neighborhood outside changed throughout the sixties and seventies, and less people frequented the store, as the Shane Candy dynasty was able to keep on. Someone threw a brick through the curved glass shop windows. Yet year after year, customers would line up at Christmastime and Eastertide in order to purchase from Shane’s Mabel Brown who was known for crafting the best candies. The Shane name was always known to be trustworthy and reliable even as the world was changing drastically around them.
Barry Shane takes over the family business
Edward’s son, Barry, was next in line to take the reins. While other candy companies had submitted to the easier path of using pre-made formulas or manufacturing candies with robot technology, Edward Shane insisted that the candies be hand-crafted. Edward trained Barry for three years how to make each candy. In 1983, Barry bought the business from his father and operated the store for over twenty-five years.
Clear Toy Candy Molds purchased from Young's Candies
Just before the Easter candy season, Harry Young, the last of the great Philadelphia confectioners passed away. For the first time since 1897, the Young family closed the doors to their shop and the Berley Brothers purchased their collection of antique Clear Toy Candy molds at auction. Ryan Berley began making Clear Toy in the basement of The Franklin Fountain and within a short time the Berley and Dean Brothers filmed a segment for The Food Network. Clear Toy Candies were alive and well again in Philadelphia, with orders nearly overwhelming to sustain.
The Berley Brothers purchase Shane Candies
After ninety-nine years of 110 Market Street operating under the Shane family, Barry Shane bequeathed ownership of the business to the Berley Brothers. They maintain the Shane name in order to commemorate the great candy-making family, and to preserve the rich and well-earned heritage of a Philadelphia tradition.
The Berleys worked tirelessly and, according to legendary Philadelphia food critic Rick Nichols, “irrepressibly,” to get the site and candy making equipment of 110 Market Street back into the shining shape that it had been in in the prime of its existence.
Shane Confectionery's Grand Re-Opening
The reopening of Shane Confectionery was a labor of love for the Berley Family and their staff. Maintaining a belief in the value of hand-craftsmanship, hard work and creative, quality-made confectionery has been paramount for introducing Shane’s to a new generation.
Shane Confectionery wins Preservation Award
Shane Confectionery was honored by The Preservation Alliance with an award for restoring the building back to its appearance in 1911. Many thanks to our staff, contractors, architect, artists, research historians, the Shane family, and everyone on the team who helped with the laborious task of bringing the oldest candy store in the nation to its fullest glory. The award ceremony at the Crystal Tea Ballroom in the Wanamaker Building crystallized a project well done.
EmployBEES join the Team
Shane Confectionery began a partnership with The Philadelphia Bee Co., providing residents of Philadelphia with locally produced bee products including honey, wax and pollen all gathered from hives within city limits. Don “The Beekeeper” Shump installed of beehives on Shane Confectionery’s rooftop based on the design of the 19th Century Philadelphian, Lorenzo Langstroth. Two hives with four ‘supers’ became eight hives with several hundred thousand workers providing honey for some of our house-made confections. Jars of honey are also available for sale in the shop.
Shane Chocolate Cafe
In late 2014, the company expanded the first floor retail space at Shane Confectionery to include the Shane Chocolate Café, serving seasonal hot and cold historical drinking chocolates as well as unique, house-roasted chocolate ice creams. The cafe now boasts King of Prussia marble countertops and 1880s wooden counters salvaged from former candy shops in the Philadelphia area. The efforts taken to save and restore the materials from these historic candy shops were no less heroic and meaningful than the Shane project itself.
View our menu
Shane Chocolate Works
Our chocolate makers work directly with the raw goodness of cacao beans, carefully selected and fermented following the traditions of quality in Central American countries where flavor comes first. We strive to make the best chocolate that we can, and be the transparent lens through which people might better understand how cacao makes its way from bean to bar.
Launch of Tour Program
In line with our mission to introduce visitors to history through taste, Shane Confectionery began a regular tour program in 2016. The weekly tour explores our shop and kitchens, while examining their context within historic Philadelphia and confectionery history. Since then, our historic programming has blossomed into talks, tastings, and hands-on workshops for visitors of all ages and interests. Programmatic partnerships with local historic institutions have strengthened our bond with our community and roots!
Click here to learn more about our programs & events.
The Franklin Ice Cream Bar
The Franklin Fountain has expanded again, rejoining Samuel Herring's legacy at 112 Market Street, by opening the Franklin Ice Cream Bar - a 1940s inspired dairy bar, that serves scooped ice cream and fancy ice, custard, ice cream novelties, pre-packed pints and quarts, and the name sake: custom created ice cream bars, dipped in Shane Confectionery's house-roasted chocolate.