Case 12 works for professional confectioners

Professional Works on Confectionery


Professional confectioners traded in all varieties of goods made from sugar, and with the increased availability of sugar, trade flourished. Products multiplied as makers sought to entice consumers with fresh novelties. The proliferating number of professional confectionersthat promised to teach the tricks of the trade for working sugar into its wide variety of forms.


Sugar boiling was the most basic process in the making of confectionery. Understanding of what sugar would do when heated to different stages, and how to manipulate it in a variety of states between liquid and solid, was the confectioner's fundamental professional knowledge. Although small confectioners continued to work by hand throughout the nineteenth century, the trade began to be mechanized by the middle of the century. Confectioners and inventors developed specialized machines to handle the many intricate and painstaking processes that the confectionery art involved.


Henry Weatherley A Treatise on the Art of Boiling Sugar, Crystallizing, Lozenge-making, Comfits, Gum Goods, and Other Processes for Confectionery, etc. ... 1865

"Twenty years since it was considered rather a clever thing (with a pair of scissors, the principal tool a sugar boiler used) to cut a seven pound boil of acid drops to size, and, with the help of a practised boy, make them round and press them flat, with the hands, in half-an-hour. The same quantity may now, with the machine, be made into drops, by the boy alone, in five minutes. "


Candy molding machine

E. Skuse Skuse's Complete Confectioner : a Practical Guide to the Art of Sugar Boiling in all its Branches, ... Useful Notes on Machinery for Every Purpose. 1890

By 1890 the mechanization of the confectionery trade was in full swing. This work, with its many illustrations and descriptions of candy-making equipment, displays the range of individual processes for which machinery had been devised.


"With every passing year the realm of the confectioner gets wider, new methods are adopted while variety is ever changing and increasing. The Engineer, the Artist, and the Chemist compel us to alter our systems and provide ourselves with their new contrivances, if we would keep in the front..."


Man oulling candy on a candy hook

Henry J. Wehman Confectioner's Guide and Assistant, or, A Complete Instruction in the Art of Candy-making. 1905

This work, although claiming to be "an aid both to the professional and amateur candy-maker" mostly addresses the professional or would-be professional. It begins with a short section on starting a retail candy business, with advice on displays, advertising, and suppliers.


The cover shows candy being worked on a candy hook, one of the most common pieces of confectionery equipment before the advent of industrialization. The sugar was boiled to the desired texture, cooled slightly, flavored and colored, and pulled, with many foldings, against the hook, a process similar to what we now see on a saltwater taffy machine.