The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 61, July 1957 - April, 1958 Page: 211
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Barbed Wire in Texas
and Jacob Haish were at the fair in De Kalb and stood together
studying the exhibit which had been patented only a few months
previously. Within the next six months each of these men applied
for patents on separate types of wire, all of which were granted
within about a year. Glidden's patent was held up for thirteen
months as a possible infringement on Kelly's and/or Haish's
patents. But in November, 1874, the Glidden patent was granted.8
Glidden, who had also patented a machine to facilitate the manu-
facture of the wire, soon sold a half interest in the wire to Isaac
Ellwood, and the two set up a factory at De Kalk, where they
both lived. On advice of counsel, this partnership, known as the
Barb Fence Company, acquired interests in other older barbed
wire patents. Then in May, 1876, Glidden sold his remaining 50
per cent interest to an eastern firm, the Washburn and Moen
Manufacturing Company of Worchester, Massachusetts. The price
was $60,00o plus 1/4 cent per pound of all Glidden wire sold for
15 cents or more per pound.
Meanwhile, Haish, the third man contending for a patent, was
advertising his Improved "S" Barb steel fence in heavily illus-
trated posters showing carloads of the wire being transported
across the continent. The pictures were underscored with the
inscription, "Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad."
But Washburn and Moen Company spread their new publicity
as "sole manufacturers of Glidden wire" and as "agents in eastern
and southern states with Ellwood and Company in the west and
the territories." They pictured their wares moving westward with
railroads and other signs of progress. One good salesman, Henry
B. Sanborn, was hired to promote the Glidden wire, and in Sep-
tember, 1875, he headed for Texas and the cattle kingdom.
But all did not go well for barbed wire in Texas. Even though
the Civil War had been over for ten years, the fact that barbed
wire was a Northern product had its effects. Texans were dubious
about this Yankee invention. They weighed the possibilities
that it was another one of those D--- Yankee schemes. There
was a growing impression that "the wire just won't do--cattle
run into it, get cut, and screw worms kill them off." This view-
point is readily understood after study of such vicious types as
Kelly's "Knife Blade," Haish's "Sharp S," and Scutts's "4-point"
sSee Figure 5.
Here’s what’s next.
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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/m1/267/: accessed March 30, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.