Barbed Wire
Patent Model Barbed Wire

Henry Rose
Waterman, Illinois
Illinois State Museum collection

Henry Rose was an agricultural inventor who owed his own company in Sandwich, Illinois. When an inventor applied for a patent on a new invention, he or she made and sent in a model of the invention with the application. This model is about one foot wide.

Rose’s barbed wire features special tongs that wrap the wire into a pattern. The prickly barbs of barbed wire deter farm animals from breaking through the fence of a pasture. It was very important as the number of farms increased, and property boundaries were marked with fences.