American Ice Company

A Former Factory on Franklin Street

Constructed in 1911, the American Ice Company is an enduring reminder of West Baltimore’s industrial development with a striking brick facade on W. Franklin Street and a powerhouse that backs up to the Pennsylvania Railroad tracks. At the time of the building’s construction, West Baltimore was quickly developing beyond the 1816 city line as small builders put up new rowhouses that soon extended west out to the Gwynns Falls.

The previous decade had also witnessed significant changes in the ice industry as the business of importing natural ice from rivers and lakes in the Northeast to Mid-Atlantic and Southern cities dwindled in the face of competition from new factories that enabled businesses to supply a more regular and consistent supply of “manufactured ice.”

The building was severely damaged in a 2004 fire. Fortunately, the current owner supported a recent nomination to the National Register of Historic Places and plans to redevelop the property while retaining the historic ice house structure.

Images

Detail, American Ice Company

Detail, American Ice Company

A sign above the original front entrance to the factory displays the name "American Ice Company" incised in stone. | Source: Baltimore Heritage | Creator: Eli Pousson View File Details Page

American Ice Company

American Ice Company

Commuters waiting for a train at the West Baltimore MARC Station can see the former factory from the platform. | Source: Baltimore Heritage | Creator: Eli Pousson View File Details Page

American Ice Company (1938)

American Ice Company (1938)

View of the American Ice Company from the southwest. | Source: Baltimore Museum of Industry, BG&E Collection, BGE.11708 View File Details Page

American Ice Company

American Ice Company

The brick front of the former factory is a prominent landmark on Franklin Street. | Source: Baltimore Heritage | Creator: Eli Pousson View File Details Page

Powerhouse, American Ice Company

Powerhouse, American Ice Company

Some of the original equipment remains intact inside the abandoned factory. | Source: Baltimore Heritage | Creator: Eli Pousson View File Details Page

Street Address:

2100 W. Franklin Street, Baltimore, MD 21223 [map]

Cite this Page:

Eli Pousson, “American Ice Company,” Explore Baltimore Heritage, accessed March 27, 2017, http://explore.baltimoreheritage.org/items/show/290.

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