Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Devil's Rope




I was born and lived for years in the Texas panhandle a fact that I am still conflicted about. It can look like the most desolate place on earth and yet you can find exquiste beauty there also. The summers are scorching, the winters cold, the spring and fall are short and sweet and there's wind, lots and lots of wind. Old timers there are fond of saying that during the cold winters, the only thing between the Texas panhandle and North Pole was a barbed wire fence. On windy winter days it really did feel just that cold.

There had to be a time when there was no barbed wire in the Texas panhandle, but barbed wire may be the substance that defines the area and possibly the people.

McLean, Texas is just a few short miles from where I was born. The young women from our town who didn't go to college or get married would go to work. There were cafes, drive-ins, a few retail businesses or you could just go McLean and get a job at the bra factory, they paid well and were always hiring. I vaguely remember a sign on the outskirts of McLean about being "uplifting" or something. Well, the bra factory is gone now and McLean is hardly more than a wide spot in Highway 66, I-40 has by-passed it completely. But McLean does have a museum, the barbed wire museum called the Devil's Rope Museum. Devil's rope is a nickname for barbed wire. I can imagine if the devil were a cowboy and he carried a rope, it would look like barbed wire.

If you are ever driving along I-40 passing through Texas, stop in at the Devil's Rope Museum, you will find out everything that you ever wanted to know about Devil's Rope, barbed wire, how it's made, how many different varieties there are, there is even a whole section about cattle brands, war wire, ranch history and Route 66 history.

11 comments:

yellowdog granny said...

my daddy always said about the pan handle ...only place in the usofa that you could stand up to your ass in mud and have dust blow in your face...i've been to that museum...years ago..

bgirl said...

hubby is from shamrock - it's a lonely, beautiful (in its own way) part of texas.

mary schweitzer said...

Ok, I gotta say it yet again, you have the most interesting blog ever! I never know what I'll see here. And it is never disappointing!
Mary

High Desert Diva said...

An appropriate name for the blasted stuff.

It's amazing what can be made out of it though...

Designs by CK said...

VERY interesting & "uplifting" post! '-)

Cool barbed wire scorpion sculpture.

TGIF & have a great weekend! :)

Spooky Hugs,
CK

Sara said...

That is quite a unique museum! Just when I thought I'd seen it all, as the saying goes, something new and different comes to my attention.

Donna O'Brien said...

Can you iamgine how hard it would be to create anything out of this stuff? You reminded me of that saying, "Idle hands are the devil's workshop". I've never heard the xepression, Devil's Rope. It works.
D.

Maryam in Marrakesh said...

I love those huge barbed wire balls. I would love to have one as a sculpture.

Designs by CK said...

Christie ~ Have a Vonderful holiday weekend.

Spooky CK

Anrosh said...

Once I saw an artist making figures with chicken coup wire on the streets of new york. This world has many artists and many artists share the same geographical world.

Sweet Repose said...

Have always had a hankerin' to visit Texas...the weather has been a little scarey lately...as in Iowa, oh those thunderstorms!
sharon