About the Milton Hershey School Archives

The Department of School History and MHS Heritage Center at Kinderhaus is the "family attic” for our students and keeper of the institutional memory of the Milton Hershey School.

The MHS Heritage Center at Kinderhaus is located at 635 Meadow Lane. 

Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of School History is to provide all members of the MHS community with an opportunity to learn about the history of their School as well as the values practiced by Milton and Catherine Hershey.  The Department of School History serves the MHS community by preserving the past, capturing the present, and preparing for the future and supports student success by providing educational programming aimed primarily toward students and staff  (including houseparents, teachers, and administrators), but appropriate for alumni, retirees, and the general public.                                                                      

Kinderhaus 1930 Milton Hershey SchoolHow You Can Help Preserve Our History

Memories and documented records are important to our students and vital to the heritage and future of the School as a whole.  Mr. Hershey created the archives in 1934 when he personally requested the School Librarian to begin keeping items important to the School’s history.

If you have items that may be important to the history of MHS, The Department of School History shall accept such materials on a case-by-case basis.  The Department shall provide proper documentation to the donor, including a receipt and/or gift agreement.  Every effort shall be made to record the history and provenance of the donation.

Procedures – Research Service

A.   Individuals interested in conducting research on or about Milton Hershey School may be asked to submit a written proposal to an internal MHS Institutional Review Board (IRB) describing the purpose and methodology of their research as well as how the information is to be used before proceeding.

B.   In keeping with generally accepted archival practices, archival materials are restricted to on-site use only.  Users, without exception, are not permitted to borrow materials or to take materials off-site. 

C.   The Department encourages requests and visits from both School Researchers and Guest Researchers in accordance with guidelines and protocols developed in consultation with the MHS Office of General Counsel.  The Department reserves the right to determine and/or limit and/or refuse access to any photograph, document, or other archival image or collection on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the Director of School History and, if necessary, in consultation with the Office of General Counsel.

D.  A School Researcher is any individual associated with the School as a currently enrolled student or currently employed faculty, staff, or administrator.  A Guest Researcher is any individual not currently associated with the School.  This category includes alumni and retirees as well as individuals with no previous association with the School. 

E.   Our preferred method of research is in person; however, staff will respond to brief research queries on behalf of researchers unable to visit.  The Department reserves the right to refuse any request deemed to require an unreasonable amount of staff time to complete.   While School Researchers are given primary consideration, every effort is made to accommodate the needs of alumni and retiree guest researchers before those not associated with the School.  Alumni and retirees are not charged for time and/or materials used in conducting research unless undue burden is placed on staff, an excessive amount of materials are used in conducting research, or previous arrangements have been made.

Photo: Kinderhaus, 1930        

Contact Information

Director of School History/Curator of High Point Mansion

Jim McMahon                      



Coordinator of School History

Susan Alger



School History Assistant

Sally Purcell 717-520-2012


Curator Emeritus                                               

Dr. Joseph Brechbill