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Re: [Authentic_SCA] Ice chests/coolers

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  • Cynthia J Ley
    I recall reading somewhere that Saladin, upon hearing Richard Lion Heart was ill, sent him some flavored ices, apparently made with snow brought down from the
    Message 1 of 7 , Jul 1 9:09 AM
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      I recall reading somewhere that Saladin, upon hearing Richard Lion Heart
      was ill, sent him some flavored ices, apparently made with snow brought
      down from the mountains. So there had to be some way of transporting it.

      Arlys



      > > On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 23:27:30 -0700 (PDT) Park McKellop
      > > writes:
      > > > It occurs to me, that since Saladin had ice for his drinks
      > (shown in
      > > > KoH, but based on a real incident, IIRC),
      >
      > Umm... was this "at home" or " in the field"?????
      > At home, ice rooms were possible...
      >
      >
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    • lilinah@earthlink.net
      ... I have read, not in relation to Salah al-Din but late SCA-period Persia, that chests of lead lined with tightly packed grasses to bring ice down from the
      Message 2 of 7 , Jul 1 11:54 AM
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        >Ice requires some sort of insulator. Perhaps straw or grasses?
        >
        >Arlys
        >
        >On Thu, 30 Jun 2005 23:27:30 -0700 (PDT) Park McKellop
        ><squire009@...> writes:
        > > It occurs to me, that since Saladin had ice for his drinks (shown in
        > > KoH, but based on a real incident, IIRC), that it wouldn't last long
        > > in the serving container it came from, so they must have had some
        > > sort of ice chests...
        > >
        > > Alcyoneus

        I have read, not in relation to Salah al-Din but late SCA-period
        Persia, that chests of lead lined with tightly packed grasses to
        bring ice down from the mountains into the cities. I imagine a fair
        amount melted before it got there, but if you're the Shah, you can
        have people do these things for you.

        However, a lead chest would be a bit more than i could manage.
        --
        Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)
        the persona formerly known as Anahita
      • julian wilson
        lilinah@earthlink.net wrote: Ice requires some sort of insulator. Perhaps straw or grasses? ... COMMENT Dear Listers, I don t know what it was like in 19th C
        Message 3 of 7 , Jul 2 1:04 AM
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          lilinah@... wrote:>Ice requires some sort of insulator. Perhaps straw or grasses?
          >
          >Arlys
          COMMENT
          Dear Listers,
          I don't know what it was like in 19th C USA & Canada, - but in 19th C. England, country-House Staff used to send to London - ice, - fruits, fish, dairy-products, game, and other perishable things which needed to be kept at a stable temperature [higher or lower] - by using the excellent Railway Services of such Companies as the GWR, LNWR, LNER, Great Central Railway. Somerset & Dorset Railway, &c - in "hayboxes*", consigned via the trains' Guards' Vans, to be either "express delivered" or even collected from the London Termini by the Family Servants.. [NOTE - hay was cheaper than cork as an insulator, and readily-available in a largely-rural economy such as Victorian England. Cork had to be imported, - mainly from Spain.]

          In a book on English Country Houses, in chapters about the Cookery facilities and domestic equipment of the Victorian Era, - I've seen comments that - when "The Family" was at the London House "for the Season", - the country-house staff would daily send the Family Estate's fresh vegetables, fruits esp. strawberries, flowers, cream, milk, - "up" to the London House by the early-morning "fruit & veg Expresses" - all packed in hayboxes.
          I've seen a few surviving "hayboxes" on display in historic country-Houses now in the care of the National Trust, and English Heritage; - and what you have is a chest-within--a-chest [double-lidded as well] with the 3"[average] space between thickly padded with hay/straw.
          I don't know how efficient the hayboxes were, - but the fact that their use was so widespread as to have a goods' listing in all the Railways' "Goods Prices" suggests they were pretty-good insulated containers. The outer boards were about 5/8" thick, and dovetailed to form a strong chest; while the inner box was merely a lining of thin boards only 1/4" to 3/8" thick.
          Now, while what I have described is of Victorian date, the technology used dates back to the Romans.So, for SCAdians wanting to try making a mediæval "haybox" - I would hazzard a guess that "hayboxes" will be found listed and described in the preserved Victorian catalogues of such famous London Stores as Gamages, The Army & Navy Store [ who "supplied The Empire"], Selfridges, &c. Perhaps also in their US late-19th C counterparts' [such as Sear's] catalogues, as well?
          Another fruitful research area might well be the domestic literature of the mediæval Moorish World, and of the brilliant and 'liberal' Kingdoms of Sicily & Cyprus - [perhaps in the time of King Roger]. Those hot-climate mediæval States would surely have grappled-with- and found-solutions-to- this problem of keeping perishable things cool, - not being constrained by the Catholic Church's tradition of labelling any early "science" they didn't understand as "magic" and promptly banning it's use by Christians.




          Yours in service,
          Julian Wilson,
          [aka. Messire Matthew Baker/Matthieu Besquer, Governor & Castellan of Jersey, 1486-1497: - "Si vis pacem, para bellum"]
          late-medieval Re-enactor; & Historian and Master Artisan to
          "The Companie of the Duke's Leopards",
          [the only medieval living-history Group
          in "olde" Jersey]

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