“In Before the Refrigerator: How We Used to Get Ice, Jonathan Rees provides a rich and detailed history of how ice became an American staple… Rees does a masterful job illustrating how, in its rise and fall, the ice industry created many industry alliances and consumer habits that are still with us today. Ice has become a taken-for-granted feature of modern living. This book is the story of how that came to be.”

-Xaq Frohlich, Auburn University Journal of Southern History

“[Before the Refrigerator] is an in-depth portrayal of a once-indispensable, life-changing technology, the former existence of which is as unknown to most of us as that of the telegraph or canal is to today’s undergraduates… Rees synthesizes considerable archival research and presents interpretations of importance to scholars… Before the Refrigerator is as refreshing as ice water on a hot summer day.”

– Jeffrey L. Meikle, University of Texas at Austin Journal of American History