A Plea For Shaped Information

By Staff

303 Fisher Road Fitchburg, Massachusetts 01420

I recently had the pleasurable experience of presenting a paper
on the ice harvesting industry in Massachusetts to the joint
meeting of the New England Chapters of the Society of Industrial
Archeologists. As its name implies, the organization spends
considerable time on delving into the historical facts of the
industries of the United States.

The New England Chapters have done considerable extensive
studying of some of our practically unheard of industrial sites in
the area. Some of the current studies involve the Black-stone
Canal, the Forestdale Ironworks, etc. and brought to light many
interesting facts pertinent to the engines and other forms of
motive power used either to operate or in conjunction with these
sites.

After listening to some of the doctoral theses that were
presented by some of the younger participants, I found I learned a
tremendous amount of information in how to obtain historical
information. While I, myself, and my wife are both research
oriented when it comes to matters we become involved with, I read
in practically each issue of GEM someone who is attempting to
obtain information pertinent to one or more industries that were
involved primarily in the manufacturing of engines. I am sure that
within the organization there are members who are as interested in
certain industrial areas as we are in our particular narrow field
of engines and motive power.

I use ‘SIA’ as an example because of my recent
involvment with them and because I am a member of the Southern
Chapter, but I am certain that our GEM readers could enlighten us
to other local, state or national groups who, though not solely
engine or power oriented, could enhance our knowledge with
information that they already have stored in their files and very
posssibly we could bring to light other data that they have not yet
been able to complete.

I would be interested in personally hearing of any of these
groups, but I am certain that many other GEM readers would have an
equal interest.

As for example, I would like to find the where-with-all and time
to adequately research the Massachusetts Ice Dealer Association and
what I believe was called the Massachusetts Ice Commission.

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