DeKALB – Glidden Homestead and Historical Center is offering Sunday tours of the National Register of Historic places site where barbed wire was invented.
From noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, July 11, visitors can tour the home where Joseph Glidden and his family lived when he created his most famous invention and see a working onsite blacksmith shop.
Programs at Glidden Homestead are made possible in part by the Mary E. Stevens Concert and Lecture Fund.
This year’s theme is “A Treasure at 160” since 2021 marks the 160th anniversary of Joseph Glidden’s home. A National Register of Historic Place site, it is the home where Glidden lived when he invented barbed wire. The home was extensively remodeled in 1910 by a prominent architect and continued as a Glidden family residence until it became a museum in 1998.
Joseph Glidden developed barbed wire in DeKalb in 1873 and went on to patent numerous other inventions. Barbed wire production continued at the homestead site through the winter of 1873 into the spring of 1874, when the operation moved into town.
Glidden built the Glidden House Hotel in downtown DeKalb that opened in 1877. In June 1879, J.F. Glidden Publishing bought the DeKalb County Chronicle that had been started earlier that year. Glidden was mayor of DeKalb from 1881-1883.
A tentative program listing for the 2021 season can be found at www.gliddenhomestead.org/events.html.
The Glidden Homestead, located at 921 W. Lincoln Highway, is taking reservations for tours. Admission is $4 per adult and free for children younger than 14.