Old House Mysteries Solved: The True Function Of Those Curious Small Doors!

 



The quaint, small doors seen on some older homes have mystified many, but they serve as a portal to a bygone era of innovation and daily life before the advent of electric refrigeration. These small, insulated doors, commonly found on the exteriors of houses, played a crucial role in the pre-refrigerator days, marking a significant advancement in food preservation methods.

Ice Delivery Doors: A Necessity of the Past
Before electric refrigerators became a household staple, the challenge of keeping food fresh required creative solutions. Enter the ice delivery service, a vital innovation from the late 19th to the early 20th centuries. Homes were equipped with ice delivery doors to facilitate the easy and efficient delivery of ice blocks directly into the home's icebox or kitchen. This system was not only practical for preserving perishables like meat, dairy, and vegetables but also respected the privacy and security of the household.

The Process and Purpose
Ice, harvested from frozen lakes and ponds during winter, was stored in insulated ice houses until needed. The ice delivery doors allowed icemen to deposit the ice directly where it was needed, minimizing air exchange and preventing the ice from melting prematurely. This service was indispensable for food storage, contributing significantly to public health by reducing the risk of foodborne illnesses.

Architectural and Technological Marvel

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