The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 61, July 1957 - April, 1958 Page: 207
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THE SOUTHWESTERN HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
VOL. LXI OCTOBER, 1957 No. 2
IAarbed Wire it Zreas
HENRY D. McCALLUM
THE SUBJECT Of barbed wire is one which may be ap-
proached from many angles: from the viewpoint of the
manufacturer, the agriculturist, the economist, the folk-
lorist, and the student of pioneer trends. But for the purpose of
studying the several stages of development of barbed wire from
the earliest to present-day types, an approach from the viewpoint
of the collector may serve best to present not only a complete
picture but also a concrete one.
This is by no means a new way of studying a subject, but it
may be a new way of studying this subject-and this may be a new
kind of collector under the sun. As far as the writer has been able
to ascertain, there are but twelve known collectors of barbed wire;
eight scattered throughout Texas, one in Louisiana, two in New
Mexico, and one in Kansas. There is no established system of
communication between these twelve and no system of collabo-
ration, though it has been observed that each is more than ready
to exchange samples and stories when the opportunity arises.
But apparently without direction, each has fallen into the habit
of collecting barbed wire by way of outdoor living and actual
experience with both old and new fencing. To the average person,
barbed wire is nothing more than wire with barbs .on it, but to
one who comes in physical contact with it, barbed wire makes
more of an impression. And when two types as dissimilar as the
chain-link and a ribbon-type wire are come upon within the space
of a few weeks, it is more or less natural to assume that there may
be other types and to look for them. At any rate, this was the
course of events which led to finding the fifty-odd pieces of un-
usual wire which comprise the collection to be used herein as a
basis for discussion of the subject of barbed wire in Texas.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 61, July 1957 - April, 1958, periodical, 1958; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101164/m1/251/?rotate=90: accessed November 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.