With Ice Please!

With New Year's Eve here, there will be plenty of ice used in sculptures and serving foods such as shrimp and oysters, not to mention keeping the bubbly cold. But before electricity and refrigeration,   there was only one source of ice: Ice ponds and ice houses. Workers cut the ice and it was stored in a nearby "house," in salt hay, cork and sawdust insulation until it was needed. Around 1900, the Fernwood Lake Ice Company, pictured here, had the largest building in Massachusetts, measuring 105 feet x 205 feet. In 1908, the Fernwood Ice Company merged with Cape Pond Ice. The fishing industry used a lot of ice to preserve their catch as it was brought to market.

With New Year’s Eve here, there will be plenty of ice used in sculptures and serving foods such as shrimp and oysters, not to mention keeping the bubbly cold. But before electricity and refrigeration, there was only one source of ice: Ice ponds and ice houses. Workers cut the ice and it was stored in a nearby “house,” in salt hay, cork and sawdust insulation until it was needed. Around 1900, the Fernwood Lake Ice Company, pictured here, had the largest building in Massachusetts, measuring 105 feet x 205 feet. In 1908, the Fernwood Ice Company merged with Cape Pond Ice. The fishing industry used a lot of ice to preserve their catch as it was brought to market.

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