25. Independence Avenue/ The Ice House
Independence Avenue was a main thoroughfare into Bath during the 18th and 19th centuries, known as Martinsburg Rd. until the 1920s. The southeast corner of Independence and Washington streets was originally owned by Washington cousin Henry Whiting. The current residence dates to the 1870s and has wood pegged windows. Its two porticos were erected in angles in 1901 and the porch in 1915. The small structure attached is a rare, intact harness and wagon shop with board and batten siding built in 1886. It was the original business of Romanus Hunter who later moved his operation across the street. Hunter’s Hardware continues today in a building constructed in 1928.
The block is dominated by the Ice House, home of the Morgan Arts Council since 1996. The yellow pressed brick structure was built as a state-of-the-art apple cold storage facility in 1911. In 1921, the siren whistle for fire alarms was installed on top of the building and continues in use today. The corner was part of a tannery in the 19th century, then a livery operation. In 1861, it was an empty lot and site of the only legal hanging in Morgan County history.
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