(1) Build round a brick well, with a small grating for drain at bottom for the escape of water from melted ice. Cover the bottom with a thick layer of good wheat straw. Pack the ice in layers of ice and straw. Fix a wooden cover to the well.
(2) Fire-brick, from its feeble conducting power, is the best material to line an ice-house with. The house is generally made circular, and larger at the top than at the bottom, where a drain should be provided to run off any water that may accumulate. As small a surface of ice as possible should be exposed to the atmosphere, therefore each piece of ice should be dipped in water before stowing away, which, by the subsequent freezing of the pieces into one mass, will remain unmelted for a long time.
(3) Make a frame-house the requisite size, with its floor at least the thickness of the bottom scantling from the ground, thus leaving space for drainage and a roof to shed off the water. The boards of the wall should be closely joined to exclude air. Then build up the blocks of ice, cut in the coldest weather, as solid as possible, leaving 6 in. all round between them and the board walls; fill up all interstices between the blocks with broken ice, and in a very cold day or night pour water over the whole, so that it may freeze into a solid block; shut it up till wanted, only leaving a few small holes for ventilation under the roof, which should be 6 in. above the top of the ice. It is not dry heat or sunshine that is the worst enemy of ice, but water and damp air. If all the drainage is carried promptly off below, and the damp vapour generated by the ice is allowed to escape above, the column of cold air between the sides of the close ice-house and the cube of ice will protect it much better than it is protected in underground ice-houses, which can neither be drained nor ventilated; sawdust also will get damp, in which case it is much worse than nothing.
(4) An improved sort of ice-house, recommended by Bailey, gardener at Nuneham Park, Oxford, is shown in plan and section in Fig. 6, where the dotted line indicates the ground level.
The well or receptacle for the ice a is 10 ft. 6 in. wide at the base, and 3 ft. wider near the top; the walls are hollow, the outer portion being built of dry rough stone, and the inner wall and dome / of brick. The outer wall e might be replaced by a puddling of clay, carried up as the work proceeds. Over the top is a mound of clay and soil g, planted with shrubs to keep the surface cool in summer. The drain i carries off the water formed by the melted ice, and is provided with a trap h to prevent the ingress of air through the drain. There is a porch or lobby 6 provided with outer and inner doors c; and apertures at d, to get rid of the condensed moisture, which, if not removed, would waste the ice. These ventilating doors should be opened every night, and closed again early in the morning. The most important conditions to be secured are dryness of the soil and enclosed atmosphere, compactness in the body of ice, which should be broken fine and closely rammed, and exclusion as far as possible of air. (Gurd. Mag. Bot.)
(5) A very cheap way of storing ice has been described by Pearson of Kinlet. The ice-stack is made on sloping ground close to the pond whence the ice is derived. The ice is beaten small, well rammed, and gradually worked up into a cone or mound 15 ft. high, with a base of 27 ft., and protected by a compact covering of fern 3 ft. thick. A dry situation and sloping surface are essential with this plan, and a small ditch should surround the heap, to carry rapidly away any water that may come from melted ice or other sources. (Gard. Jl.)
(6) The following is an economical method of making small ice-houses indoors: - Dig a hole in a cool cellar, and make it of a size corresponding to the quantity of ice to be kept. At the bottom of this hole dig another of smaller diameter, the edge of which goes down with a gentle slope. This kind of small pit, the depth of which should be greater in proportion as the soil is less absorbent, must be filled with pebbles and sand. The whole circumference of the large hole is to be fitted up with planks, kept up along the sides with hoops, to prevent the earth from falling in. Then the bottom and all the circumference of this sort of reservoir must be lined with rye straw, placed upright with the ear downwards, and kept up along the planks by a sufficient number of wooden hoops. The ice is to be heaped up in this ice-house, which must be covered over with a great quantity of hay and packing cloth, on which should be placed a wooden cover and some light straw. (Les Mondes.)
(7) As the result of 14 years' practical experience as the proprietor and lessee of salmon-fisheries on the west coast of Scotland, and having devoted a con siderable time to the careful study of the various modes hitherto generally observed by fishermen and others, not only on the west coast, but in many other parts of Great Britain, for pre-serving ice, Maclean has found that although sometimes elaborately constructed, at great expense, the houses struction renders them practically useless to serve the purpose for which they are intended. As a rule, he has found that about 7/8 of the ice stored in these houses goes to waste, and, in many cases, it altogether disappears; but, of course, there are exceptions. After several trials of various methods which he thought likely, in some measure at least, to prevent this waste, he dis-covered that nothing can compare with the kind of ire-house now in use at his fisheries, which is shown in Figs. 7, 8, 9. The total expense of providing one of these peat-houses need nut exceed 50s., and the cost of the others will greater than between 71. and 8l. - a very small sum when compared with the amount of money expended on the houses generally used for the preservation of ice.