Andrew H. Blair’s Ice House

Cutting ice at Laurel Lake. There are workers with a horse on the lake and train flatbeds with a horse near the rails.

Cutting ice at Laurel Lake. Horses loading ice up a ramp onto railroad flatbeds with additional workers cutting ice (01095C). 

The editor of the American Volunteer newspaper was so impressed after he visited Andrew Blair’s ice house that he wrote an article describing it in the January 4, 1872 edition of his newspaper.

“A Sight Worth Seeing--A day or so since, we visited the mammoth ice house of A. H. Blair, at the eastern end of town,1 and found it pretty nearly filled. The building is constructed of boards, running around the four sides; and the space between the outer and inner framework is filled with charcoal, making it almost entirely air tight. The ice house holds 800 tons. The ice is obtained on Laurel dam, on the line of the South Mountain railroad, is shipped to Carlisle by cars, and hoisted into the house by horse power, and is without exception the finest ice we ever saw housed in this locality. It is sawed into solid blocks, five feet long and two and a half feet wide, and is uniformly from twelve to fifteen inches thick, and as clear as crystal. These blocks are packed in against each other, fitting as closely as a solid wall of masonry. Mr. Blair has purchased the large ice house of David Rhoads,2 which he intends to fill before the freezing weather is over. Last summer was the first season he had his mammoth ice house in operation, and the consequence was an abundance of splendid ice, at lower figures than we have had for years.”

“Pure Laurel Ice. The subscriber having secured a large stock of the best quality ice, free from snow and all impurities, off of mountain streams, is now prepared to deliver it to customers at low rates. Orders left at either of the coal offices will receive prompt attention. A. H. Blair.”3 Carlisle Herald, July 11, 1872.

This entry covers the following people:

This entry covers the following places:

Similar Entry

References (Sources Available at CCHS in bold)

[1] SE corner of Spring Garden and East Louther streets at Blair’s lumber yard.

[2] David Rhoads advertised that he would hold a public sale at the Court House on Saturday, September 23, 1871 of his ice house located on North College Street extended and the Waggoner’s Gap road. The ice house was 60 feet in front and 30 feet deep and could hold 600 or 700 tons of ice. Carlisle Herald September 7, 1871.

[3]Andrew Holmes Blair was born in Carlisle in 1823. The 1860 U. S. Census of Carlisle listed him as a master tanner and the 1870 Census as a coal merchant. He died in Carlisle on January 10, 1876 and is buried in Carlisle’s Old Graveyard.