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Profile America — Tuesday, December 16th. The holiday season is mostly a time of cheer. But it's also a time for winter's most frequent misery -- the common cold and the cough that often goes along with it. While science works to find a cure for colds, the rest of us can only try to reduce their symptoms. Before the middle of the 19th century, a restaurant owner in Poughkeepsie, New York, did something to make life a little easier for cold sufferers. James Smith cooked up the first batch of cough drops in 1847. By 1872, the popular "Smith Brothers" remedy was packed in boxes for distribution and sale, becoming America's first factory-packaged candy. The nearly 40,000 drug stores in the country sell some $11.7 billion worth of cough drops, and other nonprescription medicines annually. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at <www.census.gov>.