‘The devil’s rope’: How barbed wire changed America
BBC ^ | 08/07/2017 | Tim Harford
Posted on 8/7/2017, 12:22:12 PM by Kid Shelleen
He rounded up some of the toughest and wildest longhorns in all of Texas. That’s how he described them. Others say the cattle were a docile bunch. And there are those who wonder whether this particular story is true at all. But never mind. John Warne Gates – who would become known as “Bet A Million Gates” – took bets from onlookers as to whether the powerful beasts could break through the fragile-seeming wire.
–snip– The advertisements of the time touted it as “The Greatest Discovery Of The Age”, patented by Joseph Glidden, of De Kalb Illinois. Gates described it more poetically: “lighter than air, stronger than whiskey, cheaper than dust”. We simply call it barbed wire.
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