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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Before the advent of modern refrigeration, ice was one way of keeping perishable foods cold. In the early 1800s, New Englanders harvested ice from ponds and lakes to sell abroad to places like India as well as for stocking icehouses at home. Ice could be preserved for months when closely packed and insulated with sawdust. The ice trade in northern New England grew still larger at the turn of the 20th century as people purchased ice to cool their "ice boxes" at home. This iceman stands with his cart outside an icehouse in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, around 1920. Note the steelyard for weighing the ice the customer purchased.


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Weighing Ice with Steelyard

photographer   Unidentified
date   c. 1920
location   South Deerfield, Massachusetts
process/materials   paper print
item type   Photograph/Photograph
accession #   #1996.37.01.022

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See Also...

Ice delivery

Ice Harvesting

Lifting Ice from the Water

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