Refrigerators

This passage discusses how refrigerators were invented.

Lexile Level: 810L

Categories: History Science & Technology


The refrigerator is the most used appliance in America today. Almost every house has one. But what did people do before the refrigerator was invented? In ancient times, people buried food in snow and ice, or stored it in cool streams, caves, or holes in the ground. They smoked or salted meat and fish to keep it from spoiling. Ancient Egyptians and Native Americans made ice by freezing water in clay pots on cold nights. Around 1838, Americans began using wooden boxes filled with ice to keep food cold. They put food on top of the ice or below it. The ice slowly melted into a pan, which often filled with slime and attracted mice. People bought their ice from the iceman, who drove from house to house in a horse-drawn cart. Children would chase the iceman down the street. Sometimes he would chip off a piece of ice and give it to them. That was a real treat!


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