Now that I'm better versed on the metal stars seen on old brick masonry at factories, I just noticed today that the former Kuner Empson canning factory (now apartments) also has them, although its stars are smaller than the ones used in the sugar factories. Makes sense since this factory was built in 1903 -- the same period of time when all of the sugar factories were going up. Picture above is from June 2008.
Today from a gray and drizzly, but pleasant Easter Sunday:
And a different ornamental S-shape being used here: