The Barbarians

A Chicago businessman charters a plane to fly over Texas ranch land while he scans the ground through binoculars, looking for valuable samples. A Fort Scott, Kans., man fights off hissing rattlesnakes on his farm to recover a small piece. A tourist from Camdenton, Mo., wanders through a live minefield in Israel intently snipping specimens. All of these "barbarians," as they call themselves, are hooked on one of the more unlikely but fast-growing hobbies in the U.S.: barbed-wire collecting.

Lured by the dubious romance of the rusty wire, some 65,000 collectors are...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!