04 May Our expert wooden fence installers pay tribute to the first fence builder
Have you ever wondered about the history of fencing or even of residential wooden fences? For the curious, there are a number of questions that come to mind:
- Who put up the world’s first fence?
- Why was that first fence created?
- What was it made of?
You can count Christina Kotchemidova among those who are curious. She looked into the history of fences for a paper titled “The Culture of the Fence: Artifacts and Meanings,” which ran in Counterblast, a publication of the Department of Culture and Communication at New York University.
“The history of civilization is closely tied with the history of the fence,” Christina says. “Human civilization is conceptualized as emerging from agriculture, family and property. All of these evolved with the fence.”
You probably never thought about it much before, but when you look at it that way, it makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?
If you’re not quite sure of the connection, don’t worry, Christina goes on to explain things. “In the early stages of settling human tribes tended to till the land in a group. Caesar, in Gallic War describes how amongst the ancient Germans ‘there were no separate estates or private boundaries.’ Tacitus elaborates that the Germans practiced the so-called ‘shifting cultivation’ — making a plantation, reaping the crop and then moving on. This kind of land usage does not need fences but in the long run it leads to wide-range destruction of woods and severe soil erosion so it is usually called ‘predatory cultivation’ or ‘land-mining.’”
Here at Zepco Fence, where you can find the latest in modern wooden fences, we really like the idea that fencing save us from “predatory cultivation.” That must mean that our team of expert wooden fence installers are heroes, right? (Either that or our residential wooden fence installers are descended from a long line of fence designers and fence installers who have superpowers!)
When our ancient ancestors began to settle in one place and devote themselves to agriculture, fences first came into use. We’ll never know the name of the guy – or gal – who first came up with the idea of creating a barrier that would offer security for their valuable crops. According to Christina, they probably lived in Ancient Mesopotamia and, at the time, a simple fence was the latest technology.
In her paper, Christina notes that the 19th-century essayist, philosopher and surveyor,Henry David Rousseau, once alluded to that first fence builder. She quotes him as saying:
“The first man who, having fenced in a piece of land, said ‘This is mine,’ and found people naïve enough to believe him, that man was the true founder of civil society.”
In other words, she says, “The fence helped institutionalize one of the most important elements of the social contract – the collective recognition of private property.”
Today, there are many reasons to install a residential wood fence, a PVC fence, an aluminum fence, a commercial fence or even an ornamental fence. Jerry Zepatos, who in 1972 started what would become one of the most-trusted wooden fence companies, will help ensure you get the right fence to meet your unique needs.