New Rockford Transcript - Official Newspaper of Eddy County since 1883

Archival Anecdotes: A Winter's Harvest

 

January 13, 2020

You can find ice tongs on display in the back room of the Brantford Depot at the Eddy County Museum, along with the 1919 publication "Ice Harvesting Machinery and Tools." This particular set was of ice tongs were used by New Rockford City Drayman Matt Fautch in 1912.

In the early days of the ice box, harvesting ice was a lucrative business. Small communities often utilized their fresh water sources during the late winter months to collect ice.

Could you imagine teams bundling up to haul ice out of the river?

Large blocks of ice were then stored in a cooling house and make available for sale.

Families relied on the ice to keep the food in the ice box cool. How else could they enjoy cool drinks or ice cream during the warm summer months?

My own great-grandfather harvested ice in the 1920s from the Mississippi River. Chances are, during the start of the career, he also read the widespread 1919 publication "Ice Harvesting Machinery and Tools," pictured above.

 
 

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