Before the advent of the refrigerator people used ice boxes to keep their food cold. Back at my parents farm house there was a building that had an ice house on one end of it.
On the back forty there was a small pond where back in the day, each winter, ice was harvested in large “cakes” and then stored in the ice house with layers of sawdust between the cakes. The cakes were cut into smaller chunks that would then fit in the ice box.
Here we see teams of horses being used to score deep grooves in the ice in preparation of cutting the ice into large chunks that would then be floated to the ice house for storage.
[Photo's Caption - Ice harvesting, Conneaut Lake, Pa.: Cutting deep grooves with the plow after the marking]