Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Gem Ice Shave

I photographed this at a flea market somewhere.  I presume it was used to shave ice from the block ice that was used in the old ice boxes of the time.  The shaved ice would be used to make "ices" for dessert.

Made by the North Brothers, the same Philadelphia company that went on to manufacture the famous Yankee-brand spiral screwdrivers.  (Good business move on their part--the buggy whip makers should have been so forward-looking.)

J.L. Nichols,  A.M.  The Business Guide; ...or...Safe Methods of Business.  Standard Edition.  Naperville, Illinois:  J.L. Nichols & Company, 1906.  First copyright 1886.

When I was a kid, my grandparents' cottage in the Muskokas used an icebox, and I can remember going with them to get ice from the ice man.  It was kept covered with sawdust in a big shed, where a man who looked like Hercules would use huge tongs to lift the block into the trunk of their car.  Back at the cottage, it was a big deal to get the heavy and now slippery block out of the car and into the top of the icebox. 

There's an entire website devoted to the icebox:  Ice Box Memories. Lots of cool old photos.


Mister G said...

Jeez, you're old!

The Duke said...

You've never had your ice shaved until you've used a Gem ice shave, young feller.