Story: Farm fencing

Barbed wire

Barbed wire

Numerous patents were taken out for different patterns of barbed wire in the 19th century. These are just two examples. The wire on the left, shaped like a ribbon with barbs attached, was unusual. It would have had little tensile strength and would have been difficult to strain. The other type is a more traditional pattern. However, the barbs are quite widely spaced and their points are quite short – it would have not been much of a deterrent to stock.

Using this item

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: MA_F.004337/44 (left); MA_F.004337/5 (right)

Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Robert Peden, 'Farm fencing - Wire fencing', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 11 December 2023)

Story by Robert Peden, published 24 Nov 2008