Here's a photo of primitive wire twisting machines seen at the Sedalia, Mo., Farm Expo at the Missouri State Fairgrounds. The exhibit was put together by Harold Eddy, Slater, Mo. The exhibit is demonstrated by Harold, his son Alan and Clifford Thompson. It was very interesting to see how wire farm fences were made by hand and machine. The machines were all made before 1900 and are hand-cranked.
The photo shows a Kitselman fence machine on the left, which makes a different type of woven wire. To the right, a wire twister frame is shown that twists two wires. One has a barb applied by hand pliers called barb-forming pliers. The Eddys are more than happy to demonstrate all phases of the processes. This was the most interesting and educational exhibit I saw at the 2006 antique shows. My children really listened and learned.
Editor's note: Harold Eddy and his remarkable collection were the subject of a cover story in the August 2005 edition of Farm Collector.