Kenosha History Center Exhibit: Kenosha Ice Harvesting

November 24, 2017 through December 2018

Open Tues.-Fri. 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Sun. 12 - 4 p.m. Closed holidays.

As the 19th century drew to a close, a boom industry began to explode in Kenosha County. Ice was a necessity of modern life. It cooled food in the home, preserved meat and goods as they transited the national rail network, and enabled beer to be brewed year-round. As Chicago expanded and became ever more polluted, local ice sources became less usable. Kenosha ice, however, was clean, clear, and nearby.

Feeding Chicago’s meat processing industry, ice from Kenosha was valued across the Midwest. Lakeshore land became a premium which was eagerly bought by large ice companies. A dense array of railroad spur lines spun around the county. But it was short-lived. As quickly as the ice industry boomed, it busted. The skeletons of the ice industry are still apparent in our county.

The Kenosha History Center is proud to present our all-new exhibit detailing the tools and process used to turn frozen water into cold *hard* cash. Exhibit runs through 2018.

Free admission; donations appreciated.