Old News – Ice Box

I bet you wanted to know how to clean an ice box. This article from 100 years ago will tell you how. Some of the directions are dangerous. Salsoda, also known as washing soda, that it says to use to clean the ice box is very acidic and will burn your hands. You can still buy it but you would have to wear rubber gloves so your hands wouldn’t be burned. Better to use would be baking soda which is not acid. Then in the first paragraph it says to use boiling water. Just another thing that will cause burns to your hands.

The ice man would bring ice whenever you needed it. Most people wouldn’t need ice every day but it depended on the size of ice compartment of your ice box. You would also have to empty the drain water every day.


Friday, July 27, 1917


First remove all food from the food compartment and with strong, hot soapsuds, in which there is a generous handful of salsoda, notwithstanding its effect upon the hands, wash the compartment with water from a boiling teakettle.

Wipe dry with a perfectly clean towel and wash and scald the doors and the ledges and shelves, which have been removed. Set the shelves in a current of air and leave the door of the compartment open so that it may cool. Then wrap the ice in a paper ice blanket and set in the food compartment and treat the ice compartment in the same manner. When all the water has run down the drain remove the drainpipe and scald it again and again with boiling soda and water. Noxious gases form in the drainpipe and these literally poison any food with which they come in contact.

Cool the drainpipe and replace and when the ice compartment has cooled set back the ice and close the doors, being very careful always to latch them, else a large proportion of the efficiency of the refrigerator is lost

It is a good plan to go over the outside of the chest or refrigerator with an oiled cloth if it is a wood finish or with soap and water and metal polish if it is enamel metal trimmed. This will prolong the life of this piece of furniture. Its preservation is important, for in case of moving it is often most convenient to dispose of such articles, and if they are in perfect condition they will bring more.

In storing away food care should always be taken to see that no drops and overflow are allowed to remain around the rims of bowls and plates. A container which is shaped for butter is in the end most economical for then odd bits may be put away and the container need only be washed when a fresh supply is laid in.

Wash and sort all salad materials as soon as they enter the house, put them in clean white bags and shake to dislodge water drops. These bags may be laid against the ice, and the melting caused is more than balanced by the crisp condition in which they appear on the table.

Never set a vessel directly on the cake of ice. If instant cooling is imperative, chip off a bit of ice, crush and set the vessel in it.

Never leave the doors of the refrigerator open an instant longer than is necessary.

The effort of keeping a new refrigerator clean is a real pleasure, but where an old ice chest is concerned the work should be reduced by giving the entire box a coating of paint or two if need be. Aluminum paint does excellent service for the inside and stops up cracks and holes. This paint is also said to be sanitary. Where there are old wooden racks and shelves a scouring with sand salsoda and soap will render them germless.

1947 Monroe HS Yearbook

I uploaded the 1947 yearbook for Monroe High School in Rochester. There were pictures for 304 seniors and 8 seniors that did not have a picture in the yearbook.

This school had a lot of activities for the students including a girl’s riding club.

The sports teams are all large except for the men’s bowling team which only has 6 members.

There are 5 pages of candid photos like the ones to the right. One page of baby pictures with only 11 people represented.

The Rochester Public Library has yearbooks online for Monroe HS for the years 1927 (first graduating class) to 1940. Go to their School Heritage Collection web page to see all that they have available.

Wilkinson Scrapbook Article #30

In this article from William Wilkinson’s scrapbook “One Hundred Great and Near-Great Events, Person and Places in Rochester History” (1947) he writes about the lower falls of the Genesee River. The view, which he recreates, was on some old postcards. In order to get that view you would have to go down to the landing where the old Glen House was located. I have seen some fishermen down there but haven’t figured out how they got there as there is a steep cliff-edge above it.

Mr. Wilkinson also wanted what he calls a “parkway” along the falls. That has happened. If you park in the lot at Maplewood Park off Driving Park Ave. you can hike the trail along the lower falls. It continues south and crosses the river at the middle falls and goes all the way to Genesee Valley Park. Following the trail north from Maplewood Park will take you all the way to Lake Ontario. For more information on the trail see this web page from the City of Rochester.

No matter where you go along our beautiful Genesee, you will find a picture waiting there for you. Few cities are blessed with such scenery. Youngstown, Ohio had such a stream with high banks and they advertise it as “the Grand Canyon of the East” but it can’t hold a candle to our Genesee. San Antonio, Texas have a small stream, that runs through the center of town and they have made a beautiful park out of it, a bandstand on one side of the stream and seats for the audience on the other. Rochester could do more to make our river assets easier to see. A parkway at the river’s edge, below the lower falls would help. The old Glen House once stood at the north of the Driving Park Avenue bridge on the west side. This was a favorite rendezvous for nature loving Rochesterians back in the 1870s. Steamers plied the river between the Glen House and Lake Ontario. An elevator carried people from the top down to the river’s edge. Now and then it went haywire. The Glen House burned in 1894 with the loss of a life – the mother-in-law of the proprietor, a Mrs. McIntyre; if we can believe Arch Merrill..

More McCurdy’s

I uploaded six more issues of Life at McCurdys. It was the small magazine for employees of the stores. By the time of these issues they had three stores; the main one downtown, one at Northgate Plaza in Greece and one in Geneva.

In three of the issues are pictures of the annual company picnic. They went to Willow Point Park that used to be in Webster. The girl on the kiddie ride is Judy Ellis, daughter of Charles.

The new issues available are:
July 1956
Oct. 1957
April 1958
April 1959
Aug. 1959
Aug. 1960

Old News – Men Enlisted in WWI

World War I is still going on 100 years ago. The Brockport newspaper ran a list of men that have joined the military. The US has only been in the fight for 3 months so none of the area men have been sent overseas as of yet.

I cheated on the ad. It was from the Catholic Journal. How could I resist a play with actual Native Americans telling a story of their people. I am not sure if this play was based on Longfellow’s poem, “The Song of Hiawatha” or the real person that was a co-founder of the Iroquois Confederacy. I would think that the play was based on the poem.


Thursday, July 19, 1917


The following list gives the names of some of the boys from Brockport and vicinity who have enlisted. We realize that this is not complete and will appreciate it if friends or relatives hand us the names of those who have been omitted.

Earl Anderson — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Lyman Avery — Mosquito Fleet, Marblehead
Fred Banker — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Harold Burch — Rochester Base Hospital
John Cassarette — 2nd N. Y. Ambulance Co.
Roy Chadsey
Percy Church
Harry Coleman — Co. E, 4th Inf., Brownsville, Texas
Loyd Coleman — Mosquito Fleet, Marblehead
Milton Conkling — Buffalo Base Hospital
Rodney Dobson — Naval Coast Reserve
Dennis Duffy — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Roy Early
Cecil Efford — 33rd Regiment, Mich. N. G.
Samuel Efford — 33rd Regiment, Mich. N. G.
Joe Fishbaugh
George Frawley — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Frank Goffe
Spencer Gooding — Mosquito Fleet, Marblehead
Stanley C. Goold — 33rd Regiment, Mich. N. G.
Charles Harsch — Co. F, 28th Inf., McAllen, Tex.
Kenneth Heinrich — Hospital Corps., Penn. N. G.
Georg Hudson
John Hyland
Herbert Lane — Officers’ Reserve, Madison Barracks
Donald Lawler — Naval Coast Patrol
Merrill Long — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
W. Ray Lorback – Infantry
James McLaughlin — Aviation Corps
Clarence Michaels — 3rd Reg. N. Y. Infantry
Harold Miller — Naval Coast Patrol
Austin Morrison — Aviation Corps
Dennis Murray — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Cecil Meyers — Troop F, 8th Cav., Ft. Bliss, Tex.
Charles McCoy
George Minot — Red Cross, Buffalo
George L. Murray, Hamlin — Engineer Corps
Jerry Murray
Patrick Murray
Raymond Patte — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
James L. Pease – Detachment G, Signal Corps, Fort Leavenworth
James Reed
William Richardson — Sam Houston, Texas
Joseph Ryan – Officers’ Reserve, Madison Barracks
Emerson Reed — 33rd Regiment, Mich. N. G.
Roy F. Robinson — Civil Eng. Corps, Ft. McDowall
George Ryan — 3rd Reg. N. Y. Infantry
Edward B. Simmons — 2nd Ambulance Co.
John Shepherd — Quartermasters’ Dept., Naval Reserve
Archie Smead — 2nd Ambulance Co., N. Y. G.
Angelo Strong — 15h Reg., Co. C., Marines
Boyd Williams — Buffalo Base Hospital
Robert Winne
Edward Ward
Myron Whitlock — Mosquito Fleet, Marblehead
Fred Wilcox
Edwin Witney — Mosquito Fleet, Newport News