• 01420117196.JPG

Object ID
Object Name
Pick, Ice
Object Collection
Alex's Candy Shop (is part of)
Date Created
1920 – 1940
Metal; Wood
Object Entities
Object Description
This ice pick is made of a combination of wood and metal. The handle is the only part that is made of wood. It is worn away on the grip from use and age. It has become completely smooth as well. The metal part of the object meets with the handle with an attachment which connects the two. The attachment is circular just like the handle is only it's smaller. The pick part itself comes out of the attachmetn but is flat instead of circular. On the rectangular part of this piece is the marker's mark. It reads "Hamilton Beach No. 50." The backside of this piece has a metal strut that helps support the picking motion and keep the wood from separating from the picks. The pick has six circular prongs that are pointed and still sharp. This part of the object is a little rusted because of its contact with water, as is most of the metal.
Paulina Franks' grandfather, John Rassogianis, came to Chicago in the 1890s. He began his life in the new city by peddling fruits and later, with the help of his sons Alex and George, would open a candy store. In the 1920s Paulina Franks' father Constantine became a part of the family business and the store was able to prosper. When the second business closed Paulina Rassogianis chose to hold as many of the candy store's items as possible and, later, donate them to the National Hellenic Museum. The Rassogianis family began their candy business in Chicago proper, working out of their own shop named "St. Louis Ice Cream Parlor." Eventually, the shop was closed and the Rassogianis' chose to continue their candy store venture in Berwyn, Illinois. The new shop they chose to open was named Alex's Sweet Shop. Paulina Franks' father was a key contributor to the success of the Rassogianis candy stores. While Constantine Rassogianis was a noteworthy entrepeneur, he also had many other accomplishments. Among these was his four years of involvment in the Greek national military during World War I wherein he obtained the rank of sergeant. Also, he was a published author and poet, an experienced mandolin player, a church officer and had extensive knowledge of psalti. An ice pick is a tool used to break up, pick at, or chip at ice. Before the invention of modern refrigerators, ice picks were a ubiquitous household tool used for separating and shaping the blocks of ice used in ice boxes. The ice would be imported from lakes that were either still frozen or had been kept in an ice house since their harvest in the winter. The ice picks could be large in order to harvest a large amount of ice, or they could be small for household or store use like this one. Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc., which is the company that made this particular pick, is an American manufacturer of home appliances, air purifiers, and commercial restaurant equipment marketed primarily in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Founded in April 1910 by inventor Frederick J. Osius in Racine, Wisconsin, the Hamilton Beach Manufacturing Company took its name from two men Osius hired, Louis Hamilton and Chester Beach. He hired Hamilton as the new company's advertising manager, and Beach to work as a mechanic. Osius did not care for his own name, so he paid Hamilton and Beach $1000 each for the right to use their names instead. The company mostly sold products that Osius had invented and patented. Hamilton and Beach left the company in 1913 to form their own firm, Wisconsin Electric Company. Osius sold Hamilton-Beach to Scovill Manufacturing in 1922 and moved to Millionaires' Row in Miami Beach. In 1990, the company merged with Proctor Silex, another household appliance manufacturer, and is still in business today.
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Pick, Ice, 1920 – 1940, Alex's Candy Shop, National Hellenic Museum, https://collections.nationalhellenicmuseum.org/Detail/objects/8694. Accessed 04/18/21.