Barbed wire sites bus tour set Nov. 2

Staff Report

DEKALB, Illinois — The annual barbed wire sites bus tour will take visitors to locations associated with barbed wire baron Jacob Haish at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 2. The event is sponsored by the Joseph F. Glidden Homestead and Welcome Center in DeKalb, Illinois.

Seating is limited, and tickets are $15 for the general public, $12 for homestead members.

Local historian Steve Bigolin and Haish descendant Jeff Marshall will narrate the tours. Stops include the DeKalb Masonic Temple, the Fairview Cemetery burial site, the Jacob Haish furniture exhibit at the Ellwood House Visitor Center, and a display of Marshall’s personal collection of tools on display at the Glidden Homestead, which will be open for tours, also.

Drive-by narrations include assorted historic buildings and former locations of homes and businesses.

Haish is one of the three men known as DeKalb’s barbed wire barons; the other two are Joseph Glidden and Isaac Ellwood. Glidden and Ellwood joined forces against Haish and won an 18-year battle to secure the patent for barbed wire. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Glidden’s patent in 1892.

Haish also donated $150,000 to establish the community library, and joined forces with his rivals to have Northern Illinois State Normal School located in DeKalb.

Although Glidden’s barbed wire remains in use today, the Jacob Haish Manufacturing Co. was one of the largest manufacturers of barbed wire.

To register or for more information, call the Glidden Homestead at (815) 756-7904 or email

Posted Oct. 29, 2014

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