Sanders Confectionery


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For more than 130 years, there has been no sweeter word in Detroit than Sanders. The venerable confectioner was once as much a part of Detroit's streetscape as the Big Three, Hudson's, and Coney Islands. Sanders was more than just an ice-cream and candy shop. A Detroit icon, it served a fountain of memories for generations. Detroiters stood two and three deep behind lunch counters for tuna or egg salad sandwiches, devil's food buttercream "bumpy" cake, hot fudge sundaes, and Sanders' signature dessert—hot fudge cream puffs. As Detroit boomed, so did Sanders. At its peak, the company boasted more than 50 stores, with its products available in as many as 200 supermarkets. The Sanders story began in Chicago, where Fred Sanders opened his first shop. A series of misfortunes prompted him to relocate to Detroit, where he began selling his confections on Woodward Avenue. Business grew steadily, and by the early 1900s, he had opened other shops along Woodward and elsewhere in Detroit. The Motor City nearly lost Sanders in the mid-1980s, but its desserts shops have begun resurfacing, thanks to another Detroit institution, Morley Brands LLC, which bought the Sanders brand.