Great Great Grandfather Koontz – chillin’

Patent Application 430,963, Refrigerator, Ezra P. Koontz, Ligonier, Ind. Filed Sept. 1, 1888. Serial No. 284,364.


1 In a refrigerator, an inner compartment containing an ice-tank, and waste-water tank, in combination with a pipe leading from the bottom of the ice-tank to the waste-water tank, a pipe leading from the bottom of the ice-tank to the drinking-water tank, an overflow pipe extending from the drinking to the waste water tank, and an overflow-pipe leading out of the waste-water tank, all substantially as and for the purpose herein set forth.

2 In a refrigerator, a plurality of tanks, one of which is designed to contain ice, and is located immediately above another which is designed to contain drinking-water, milk, or other fluids, in combination with the pipe connecting said tanks, means, substantially as described, for closing said pipe when the under tank contains a fluid other than water, and means, substantially as described, at the opposite site of said ice-tank extending there from to a point outside the refrigerator, serving to carry off the waste water.

Digest of Decisions of the Commissioner of Patents and of United States Courts in the Matter of Patents, Trade-Marks, &c., Official Gazette – April – June, 1890, page 2061.

From the Patent Ofice

I just happened to find this referenced in an old newspaper that I found while scanning for other information on my Koontz ancestors. Ezra P. Koontz was my grandmother’s grandfather (my great-great grandfather). The second set of drawings make a great deal of sense as Grandfather was a cabinet maker by trade.

Grandma never said, “oh, by the way, my grandfather had a patent on the old-fashioned ice box.” It was not like the child me never gave her an opening. One time while playing at their house (built in 1929), I was playing in the kitchen – cars rolled on the floor better than on the carpet in the living room. I noticed a hole in the floor back in a corner near the stairway to the basement. I asked Grandma why they had a hole in their kitchen floor. All she said was that was where the old ice box used to drain into the basement. And that was it.

We used to visit Grandma and Grandpa when they up at Mullet Lake using the cottage of their long-time friends, Reg and Hazel Adams. In the main room of the cottage was this big chest that was chuck full of toys and games. At one point I was informed that it was an old ice box. Period.

Now, I can go with that Grandma never knew about the patent by her grandfather, or she just never thought it was important now that refrigerators were electric.

1880-03-02 Application granted

1880-03-02 Publication of US225063A

1897-03-02 Anticipated expiration

StatusExpired – Lifetime

About Pat Shaul

Genealogist / Family Historian; Blog started as a record of my Grandfather's post card collection which ran for 15 months. Then, in June, 2017, I changed over to reporting and commenting on notifications from the ANCESTRY app "We're Related" I then started to provide snippets into ancestor biographies on the dates that were significant anniversaries.
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