Appomattox Courthouse National Historical Park Restores the Icehouse

The following excerpt is from the October 4, 2012 edition of

Appomattox Co., VA – There’s been a lot going on lately at the Appomattox Courthouse National Historical Park. It’s all thanks to a $30,000 donation by the park’s ‘Friends Group’ the Appomattox 1865 Foundation. It’s in large part an effort to prepare for the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War.

The sesquicentennial celebration for Appomattox is only three years away. Folks at the park are working to make sure the village is in tip top shape come 2015. Their current project is to renovate the old icehouse.

To preserve food back in the Civil War era folks had to get creative.

“They had to have something to keep the meats,” said Todd Roach, exhibit specialist.

The McLean’s in Appomattox used an icehouse.

“Back then, they didn’t have a refrigerator, this was their refrigerator,” said Roach.

The last time this ice house had been restored was back in the 1960s and since, it has started deteriorating.

“The ends were so rotten on the corners that it was actually caving in,” said Roach.

Park Exhibit Specialist Todd Roach is in charge of rebuilding the icehouse, Civil War style.

He followed 50-year-old instructions on how to do it.

Read the full article.

Author: Leland Meitzler

Leland K. Meitzler founded Heritage Quest in 1985, and has worked as Managing Editor of both Heritage Quest Magazine and The Genealogical Helper. He currently operates Family Roots Publishing Company (, writes daily at, writes the weekly Genealogy Newsline, conducts the annual Salt Lake Christmas Tour to the Family History Library, and speaks nationally, having given over 2000 lectures since 1983.

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