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The History of Chain-Link Fencing

From England to the Jersey shore, chain link fencing has a long and special history. First invented in the United Kingdom during the mid 19th century, chain link fencing is cost-effective, durable, versatile and has low maintenance qualities. Explore the history of chain link fencing to learn more about one of the most popular fencing materials in the world.

Origins of the Metal Chain-Link Fence

What do cloth and chain link fences have in common? More than you might suspect, actually. Back in 1844, a British man named Charles Barnard developed a process to produce chain link fencing based on cloth weaving machines. In fact, the manufacturing of chain-link fencing is called weaving. After all, a chain link is little more than woven steel wire, most commonly produced today in a diamond pattern. This innovation made creating lengthy stretches of fencing fast and easy. It wasn’t long before metal fencing became wildly popular throughout England and eventually spread around the world. Nearly 50 years after the first chain-link fence was assembled, the New Jersey-based Anchor Post Fence Co. bought the rights to Barnard’s weaving machine and became the first company to manufacture chain link fences in the United States.

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Later on, during World War II in London, many of the original iron and steel fences surrounding parks were removed for scrap materials, giving chain link an important prominence during the 1940s. Chain link fences also have historic ties to some older neighborhoods, as they are economical and easy to install. In 2011, homeowners in Old Town Alexandria in Washington D.C. were surprised to find out that their chain link fences were considered historic and removing them resulted in issues with the city’s historic preservation office.

Chain Link Fencing Today

security fenceSince they were invented, metal fencing has truly taken off. Simple, easy to produce, and highly functional, chain link fencing is popular for both commercial and residential use. According to the Department of Commerce, half of all fences sold in the United States today are made of chain-link material.

This type of fence provides high security and visibility, and because it is incredibly modular, it can be customized to suit nearly any application. It remains a popular choice for security fencing specifically, as its design provides easy access control and provides clear visibility. The top of chain-link fences can be customized with a razor to the barbed wire for additional protective measures to help prevent intrusion. On the other hand, if privacy is more of a concern, this type of fence can be easily fitted with wooden or vinyl slats in either diagonal, vertical, or horizontal patterns to block outside view. Many people falsely assume this type of fence all have the same basic metallic look and feel. However, vinyl coatings can provide a smoother finish, prevent rusting, and are available in many colors to help blend into the background. Black is often the most popular color due to its versatility, but green and brown are also frequent choices. Privacy slats can also be painted in any color and stained to enhance the curb appeal of chain link fences.

It seems that the uses for chain link fencing are never-ending. Along with their historical role in neighborhoods across the United States, metal fences are also important for sports. In baseball, they are used as backstops, batting cages, and general athletic field fencing. In well-established backyard gardens, a chain link fence can be used as a trellis to create private space with large flowering plants. Chain link fencing also makes for a low-cost and effective way to secure any pets and livestock.

Your Fencing Solution

At Buzz Custom Fence we love not only providing the perfect fencing solution for our customers, but we appreciate fencing’s long history and variety of applications. Chain link fencing promises a number of fantastic uses, including high visibility, affordability, security, and no-brainer maintenance. Buzz Custom Fence proudly carries a wide selection of metal fences that can be used to surround parks, playing fields, commercial properties, homes, and just about anything our customers can imagine.

Simply contact us online or give us a call at (817) 270-9316 for a free estimate and to see what options we can include with your new fence, such as vinyl coatings in custom colors.