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Americans consumed increasingly more sugar in the 19th century. They preferred imported sugar extracted from sugar cane. Highly refined white sugar was expensive so people usually purchased less refined and cheaper brown sugar for everyday use. White (loaf) sugar came in hard cones wrapped in blue paper. Because it was not granulated, people used sugar nippers to cut off pieces and pounded the sugar to the desired consistency. West Indies sugar was among the most popular purchases at Orlando Ware's Deerfield, Massachusetts, store.
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