6 -- Cistern and Ice House

Member Rating 3 out of 5 by meadowlark on January 10, 2003

Jones carefully selected the site for his ranch complex, the guide says, such that the house was built just below the hill where the spring was. The cistern and Ice House allowed him to collect water for the house and to keep a place quite cool so that in the winter they could cut huge chunks of ice or snow and keep them in the ice house for use on hot summer days. This seemed a bit unbelievable--that the ice would last through the seering hot Kansas summer--but apparently the limestone and ground protected the ice from heat and the spring provided a cooling source. Neither of these buildings are open to the public; however, groups of 15 or more can arrange for an hour and a half tour of the house and out-buildings for $4/$2 per adult/child during the spring in summer and might get more information on these two little buildings. They are on the way to the beginning of two of the trails, so its worth a study on your way.
Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve

Strong City, Kansas
(620) 273-8494


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