Antique Oak Ice Chest/Cooler
This Wilke Manufacturing Company Oak Ice Chest is circa 1920. Although manufactured in Anderson Indiana, this is a local Colorado piece, sold by G.S. Barnes & Son Hardware, 17 S. Tejon St, Colorado Springs CO. That’s right, this piece has lived its 100 years right here on the Front Range. Gerritt Smith Barnes & Son was established in COS in 1873 and was recorded to reside in several Colorado Springs locations throughout the years, not just the Tejon St address which is now a Chipotle Restaurant. Gerrit Smith Barnes was a renowned business person but also served as Mayor of Colorado Springs in 1886. Barnes Road was named after him.
The refined form of an icebox as kitchen furniture or an appliance was invented between 1850 and 1860 and remained in production in a similar form until the advent of the electric fridge in the 1940s.
Today antique ice boxes are used as statement pieces to store just about anything! This unit features brass hardware with nickel plating. It is solid, sturdy, and functional with cosmetic imperfections consistent with age. Due to use over the years, the bottom of the unit was rotted out but has been completely and professionally restored. It now has a concrete-poured internal base of 1” thick concrete with rubberized paint to seal the bottom. Heavy duty caster wheels have been added to make it more easily moveable.
Dimensions: 41”W x 16”D x 53-½”H; 56”H with caster wheels
Weight: approx 450 lbs