Build Your Own Ice Box (1911)

By | February 1, 2013

023A Cheap Home-Made Ice Box

This should not cost over twenty-five cents. The sketch shows an ordinary soap box; inside is a tin pail surrounded by a sheet of tin, so that there is a circular air space between the pail and the sheet of tin. Sawdust is packed around the tin, and cracked ice (two cents a day) fills the tin pail around the milk bottle. The newspapers inside the cover help to keep out the warmth of the outside air.
Recommended by the Boards of Health of New York City and Chicago.

Beware of Tainted Food.

The most dangerous fault that any food can have is that it shall be tainted, or spoiled, or smell bad. Spoiling, or tainting, means that the food has become infected by some germs of putrefaction, generally bacteria or moulds. It is the poisons—called ptomaines, or toxins—produced by these germs which cause the serious disturbances in the stomach, and not either the amount or the kind of food itself. Even a regular “gorge” upon early apples or watermelon or cake or ice cream will not give you half so bad, nor so dangerous, colic as one little piece of tainted meat or fish or egg, or one cupful of dirty milk, or a single helping of cabbage or tomatoes that have begun to spoil, or of jam made out of spoiled berries or other fruit. This spoiling can be prevented by strict cleanliness in handling foods, especially milk, meat, and fruit; by keeping foods screened from dust and flies; and by keeping them cool with ice in summer time, thus checking the growth of these “spoiling” germs. The refrigerator in the kitchen prevents colic or diarrhea, ice in hot weather is one of the necessaries of life. Smell every piece of food to be eaten, in the kitchen before it is cooked, if possible; but if not, at the table avoid everything that has an unpleasant odor, or tastes queer, and you will avoid two-thirds of the colic, diarrhea, and bilious attacks which are so often supposed to be due to eating too much.

Woods Hutchinson, A. M., M. D.  A Handbook of 
Health. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1911.

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