Roundup: July 13, 2016
Almansor Court – 700 S. Almansor, Alhambra, CA.
Social Hour: 5:00 PM
Dinner: 6:00 PM
Our Speakers: Mark & Linda Nelson
Their Subject: “The Wire That Won the West”
Barbed Wire was a uniquely American invention that changed the face of the Old West. More than 400 different designs were patented in the United States. Historians and historical archaeologists can use different kinds of barbed wire to date historic sites and sometimes even to determine their specific function and the points of origin of the people who strung them. Beginning in the 1880’s, Teddy Roosevelt began writing about “How the West Was Won.” A half-century later, this theme had become staple Hollywood fare, with dozens of “Horse Operas” – wild and wooly Westerns – cranked out year after year. But the Nelsons maintain that the most iconic image of Old West, that of the lawman with blazing sixgun, should be replaced by that of the ranch hand stringing barbed wire. Come to our July 2016, Roundup and hear how barbed wire became the key component in settling the American West. On display will be many samples of historic barbed wire, each with a different kind of functional and stylistic beauty. You’ll never think of “fences” the same way again after the Nelsons’ presentation.
Mark and Linda Nelson are amongst the world’s foremost experts on American barbed wire. The newest members of the Los Angeles Corral of Westerners, Mark and Linda (aka “Bob” and “Barb” Wire), come to us from the San Dimas Corral. Mark Nelson is the President of the California Barbed Wire Collectors Association (CBWCA) and Linda is that association’s Secretary and Treasurer. Linda is also the Librarian and Treasurer for the Antique Barbed Wire Society, the American national association of barbed wire collectors, headquartered in LaCrosse, Kansas.
Brian Dervin Dillon, Ph.D.