Big Spring Herald
The Ghosts of Big Spring
Editor’s Note: This exert was originally printed June 30, 1947, in the Big Spring Herald. With Halloween coming up, Heritage Museum Director Tammy Schrecengost has agreed to share some Ghost Stories involving Big Spring history.
Here is another Big Spring “ghostly” building that no longer exists. The Ice House was located north of the tracks.
It was built in 1915 presumably over the old cemetery. As time marches on, things change, progress is made and the ice house was no longer needed. It was closed and abandoned and then torn down in the 1970s or early 80s. Now all that is left is the foundation and rubble.
The Ice man is coming! The ice man is coming! Kids would shout as they saw the ice wagon making its way from house to house. The ice man's tongs were stored
up on the side of the wagon, a large crosscut wide toothed saw and an ice pick were also ready for use as the wagon was pulled by a horse.
A horse that was all too familiar with its daily stops. The ice man would pull up to the curb and shout “Ice” and the lady of the house would raise the window and yell out “50 pounds.” The husky Ice man mounted the step on the rear of the wagon, grabbed the 300-pound block of ice with his tongs, and began to cut away the ice with his saw.
The kids could catch the “snow” as it fell from the cutting process. After the kids felt satisfied, they would then use the remainder of “snow” to throw at one another.
The company thought the ice card signs would help out the ice man so they distributed the cards to customers. The mother or children could turn the card to the size of ice that mother had requested, usually 25 or 50 pounds. This did not help the ice man for long as the card usually fell down the cracks of the window or was lost.
Some of the customers were more ingenious and placed the ice box on the porch while cutting a hole in the kitchen wall to allow for the ice to be placed in the back.
The Big Spring Ice Plant was first started in 1916. Their first priority was to sell to the local wholesale and retail consumer. However, their second and still vastly important job was to re-ice the refrigerated train cars for the delivery of cantaloupes, watermelons and other fruits brought in from California and distributed along the T&P route. It took employees one minute and 15 seconds