Mogollon News Ice
Last updated on Saturday, March 15, 2003
This winter, Joe Malloney decided to go into the ice business. He was well situated with the creek handy and some tanks on the shady side of the street. There was even an abandoned mine behind his house he could use for storage.
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Ice looked like just the sort of business he could do pretty well in: Low capital investment. - Just a saw to cut it into hundred pound chunks. He welded up a set of ice tongs out of scrap.
Next summer he figured he'd put up a sign and sell his ice to the tourists going camping in the forest or fishing at Snow Lake.
It has been a mild winter, but that is still plenty cold enough up here in Mogollon to make ice. So Joe's been going great guns since November (except when he got froze measuring the snow and had to lay off for a few days).
Elvira Sonderfeld doesn't get out a lot any more, but with spring on the air, she went for a walk one afternoon and happened on Joe. Though it was warm and bright in the sun,
Joe's tanks in the shade were already cooling off. He was pouring in the water for another batch. Elvira, who remembers the old days, struck up a conversation with him about the ice business.
"Folks didn't have electric refrigerators back then. So this fellow used to drive into town with a wagon hollering, 'Ice! Ice for sale.'"
Joe smiled nostalgically.
Elvira looked around. "What are you doing for sawdust?"
"Yes. Ol' 'Ice' packed his in sawdust. Helped it stay frozen. And kept the blocks from all sticking together."
Joe turned slightly green.
So, folks, next summer when Joe's sign goes up, have a little sympathy if the blocks come in funny sizes. There'll be a lot of crushed ice for sale too. It still won't have taken much capital. But it is going to be some mighty labor-intensive ice for the price.
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