Cotton Candy: The conspiracy theory

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Behind every good idea lives an equally intriguing story.  Take for instance the connection between the creation of cotton and candy and the dentists who seemed so determined to make it a success.


Originally called fairy floss, cotton candy has gone by many names, including candy floss or spun sugar. John C. Wharton and William J. Morrison patented their version of a cotton candy machine in 1899. Introduced  at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904 they sold nearly 70,000 boxes of candy.

As cotton candy is made entirely from caramelized sugar, most  would think that even a turn of the century dentist would know it was a cavity waiting to happen. Interestingly, Morrison was a dentist.  A dentist creating cotton candy?  I taste a conspiracy…

In 1900, cotton candy was introduced to the Ringling Brothers by Thomas Patton, who had invented a more modern version of the cotton candy machine.  Josef Lascaux, yet another dentist, created a version of the machine that he never officially patented. He did, however, coin the name “cotton candy.”

As to why more than one dentist had a hand in the rise of cotton candy’s popularity, I will leave that and the Bermuda Triangle for you to figure out…  The truth is out there.

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