Antique wire and nails do more than mark property lines and hold timbers together. They tell the story of America in the decades after the Civil War, when railroads linked the coasts and the age of open-range cattle ranching came to an end. Hundreds of patents for barbed wire, also called barb wire or barbwire, were granted at the end of the 19th century, as entrepreneurs tried to capitalize on the new demand for wire fencing.

Functional square or cut nails, so called because they were cut from sheets of iron, preceded ones made from steel wire. Date nails with numbers or letters stamped in their heads were used to convey information about whatever they were hammered into. For example, a date nail in a railroad tie might identify when the tie was laid or, if it shows letters, the type of preservative used in the wood. Date nails in telephone poles, also known as pole nails, often marked the pole's height.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Nailhunter

Nailhunter

Scott Weed's pictoral guide to date nails, or nails which have some kind of company, functional, or otherwise descr… [read review or visit site]

Alloy Artifacts

Alloy Artifacts

A tool collectors’ dream, this site is a deep repository of photos and info on 20th century hand tools and the co… [read review or visit site]

Old Woodworking Machines

Old Woodworking Machines

This collective website, which started as an online discussion forum, now also includes a large database of manufac… [read review or visit site]

Drainspotting

Drainspotting

Josh and Cam Larios have created this site enabling people to upload and 'tag' photos of historic or artistic manho… [read review or visit site]

A Millers Falls Home Page

A Millers Falls Home Page

Randy Roeder has carved out a niche for himself with his fine website devoted to the history of the Millers Falls C… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Ancient Jerusalem Israel Iron 'crucifixion' Nail! 100ad Roman Artifact BibleScary Zombie Face Enclosed In Barb Wire Halloween Prop Made Of Rubber LatexAntique Cast Iron Hardware Tray / Shoe Makers Nail Bin Vtg Farm Tool Barn Decor Huge Lot Of Vintage Used Square Nails 1 1/4 Inch Primitive AntiqueNo Reserve - Original Dug-out Ww2 Vintage German Helmet Barbed WireAntique Pantry Box - Small Size - Square NailsAntique Barbed Wire Vintage Country Fencing Corral Barb Wire Arts Crafts Farm572 Flat Cut Square Iron NailsHubbard Ww1 Trench Art Barbed Wire Forest Painting Blacksun13rAntique Barbed Wire Display~ 6 Authentic Pieces Of Antique Barbed WireVintage/antique Barb Wire Fencing PliersVery Rare Wwi Barbed Wire CuttersAntique Barbed Wire Toilet Seat Elongated Usable Novelty 12 Collectable PiecesLot Of 1913-1937 Railroad & Pole Date Nails -total 11 Celebration~~2- Pounds Of 4" Antique Square Nails~~Lot Sale Of 2 Pcs. 8" Long 1/4" Thick 1800s Cast & Hand Forged Square Nails German-french Fraternization On Barbwire Battlefield 3 Photos Dated January 1916German Wwi Stormtrooper Helmet Gas Mask Barbwire Vintage PostcardVintage Antique Barbed Barb Wire & Wire Sections 16 Pieces 18 In Long Lot # 91932 Original Photo China, Shanghai ĸOne Pound Square Cut Nails 4" Tremont Nail Co. Nos HardwareRustic Farm/western Rusty Barbed Wire Wreath W/ Cool Rusted Letters Merry ChristSusan Penhaligon & James Aubrey In Bouquet Of Barbed Wire. Rare 1976 Press PhotoSet Of Two Railroad Date NailsAncient Roman Iron Nail !! Massive 34,10g & 87mm In Length !!Crandall Zigzag Rusty Barbed Wire About 28 Feet Vintage Rustic Country Barb Vintage Barbwire Home Decor~"howdy"~wall Decor~primitive~cowboy~westernVintage 3 Inch Square Nails Lot