Harvesting ice in New England

Joined Oct 5, 2002
A few months ago while in the waiting room of a doctors office I was reading an article about a man from New England who made a fortune in the early 1800's by harvesting pond and river ice and shipping it to Florida and the Caribbean in insulated compartments in ships to insulated buildings he had built in these tropical environments. Of course, before I finished the article I was called in and then forgot to make note of the magazine on my haste to depart. It may have been the Smithsonian magazine but I am not sure. I believe that he may also have been involved in some sort of conspiracy to prevent Dr. John Gorrie of Appalachacola, Fl. from getting financial backing and/or patents for his early work in mechanical refigeration. I would appreciate any information or leads so I can fill in the gaps on these events.


Joined Nov 13, 2002
We have the family ice saw and photos of family members harvesting ice on display at a local museum. The ice was cut into blocks and was placed in ice houses (dug outs on the side of a hill that was lined with straw). Ice came out of rivers and ponds around here - rather "chilling" experience - loaded onto wagons, sleds, or skids, pulled by horses. Wouldn't they just love to see our ice makers?
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