About Us

Our History


In 1941, polio struck Winfred King, a young, hardworking Ohio farmer. The disease put him in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. Over the years, friends and neighbors helped his young family. To express their gratitude, Winfred and his wife, Marie, began giving gifts of homemade candies. What began as a loving gesture in a country kitchen eventually grew into a successful venture that began providing a living for this industrious couple. Marie's Candies opened its doors in 1956, and its reputation for old-fashioned, high-quality candies spread across the countryside. The kitchen and retail candy shop quickly outgrew the walls of the small house. In 1966, Marie and Winfred built a combination house and candy shop in West Liberty.



Marie and Winfred’s second son, Jay, worked in the candy business with his two brothers during his teenage years. After the death of his father, Jay continued to work in the business, taking ownership in 1977.  In 1981, Jay's wife, Kathy, left her career as a nurse to join the business full-time. Jay and Kathy dedicated their lives to improving candy production, increasing the candy options, and designing candy gifts.  They also moved and restored a train depot that became the business’s retail space in 1996. For more about the depot restoration, click here.



Jay and Kathy’s second of two sons, Shannon, joined the family business in August of 1998. Their daughter, Rebecca, became involved in February of 2002.  In 2016, the siblings became third generation owners. They continue the legacy of their grandparents and parents, along with the invaluable help of 30 staff members.


Read more about Marie King and the advent of Marie's Candies in the book, Faith, the Only Star.