History and Psychology CH. 1: Where did the perimeter fence come from?

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Wed, Jan 01, 2014

great wall beijing


As one year ends and another begins, most of us are reflecting on the last year of our lives. Where we've been, how we got there, and where we're going. One can also marvel over the many ingenious inventions that have come from the human mind. We make history, we learn from it and we evolve, and move forward as a society.

I often wonder where things we interact with every day originated, who invented them and what their original intent was.

And, while we don't think about perimeters, and boundaries as structural elements on a daily basis, they are a part of all of our lives on a conscious and subconscious level. Anyone who has lived in the past several hundred years has gone through their entire lives in their presence. From the emotional tearing down of the Berlin Wall, the sheer visual impact of the Great Wall of China to the boundaries of our country's borders perimeter fences have played a major role in implicative communication throughout human history.

So where did the fence come from?

The history of civilization is closely tied with the history of the fence. Human civilization is conceptualized as emerging from agriculture, family and property. All of these evolved with the fence.

On the one hand, fences are tangible objects that have been put to use at all times for definite purposes. On the other, they are artifacts having meanings in the cultural systems they've resided in.

Fencing as a concept gives us a clue into the mentality of past societies and its symbolic usage in their societies The fence can be used to exemplify the role of technologies in culture.

While technologies enable us to act or behave in certain ways, they also make us think about what we do, and create habits of thought. Hence, our practices, built upon the media we use, shape up our conceptualization of the world. With continuous usage technologies highlight what is important to think about in our lives thus establishing cultural values. Culture then perpetuates itself by employing practices as symbols.

From this perspective studying the history of the fence is at the same time studying the culture of the fence. While no more than fragmented evidence from a small number of societies, time periods and locations, we can see how the use of fences in human societies has generated myths we live by and ideologies we now take for realities.

In the early stages of settling, human tribes tended to till the land in a group. Amongst the ancient Germans there were no separate estates or private boundaries. Germans practiced the so-called "shifting cultivation".

The appearance of the perimeter fence in human societies marked the transition from a pattern of looting nature to taking care of it. It was with devoted agriculture that fences came about. While it is impossible to name the inventor of this technology back in Ancient Mesopotamia, the first man who, having fenced in a piece of land, said "this is mine," and was able to persuade others to believe him, that man was the true founder of civil society.” The fence helped institutionalize one of the most important elements of the social contract – the collective recognition of private property.

Topics: Fence Design, Specialty Fence, Residential Fence Choices, Property Value, backyard Fence, Historical Fence, Top Three Reasons for Privacy Fence, Richmond Fence

Why Do People Install Privacy Fences?

Posted by Dawn Lowndes on Mon, Jun 20, 2011

Privacy Fence

The most requested residential fence type is Privacy Fence. As the name implies, privacy is obviously the biggest reasons people choose this type of fence. Once installed you will have a new level of comfort and relaxation in your outdoor oasis. No more neighbors who might watch you as you walk around the yard, surf the net, or nap on a lazy afternoon. A wood or vinyl privacy fence can help you create cozy micro-environments within your yard.  Although a great benefit, privacy isn’t the only reason to install this kind of fence. Let’s examine some of the other reasons our customers choose to invest in a Privacy Fence.

•    Noise Reduction:  Noise pollution can have numerous adverse effects on the human body, causing such problems as lack of restful sleep, stress, and even high blood pressure!  While it is virtually impossible to make an outdoor environment completely soundproof, a well-built privacy fence can definitely help.

•    Property Definition:  Delineating your property line is another reason to install any type of fence.  It leaves no question as to what features belong to which property owner. This is very important because as time passes and neighboring properties changes hands, a clear definition of a landline can make neighborly relations better. For example, it leaves little doubt who is to prune which trees and shrubs, as well as who is to mow the grass. By leaving no plant in a gray area, you are able to take responsibility for your property and let the neighbors be responsible for theirs.

•    Water Feature Safety:  If your property contains a water feature such as a small fishpond or a swimming pool a privacy fence is a definite possibility that would increase safety and potential liability. You must consider the fact that children and animals will constantly roam the neighborhood. The last thing you would want is your pond, or pool, to appear too inviting to kids, or animals that are looking to cool off.  Most localities specifically require fencing swimming pools and this could be reflected in your homeowner’s insurance premiums. Privacy fence is only one of your choices for a safety creating barrier.

•    Support Climbing Vegetation:  Privacy Fences also make great supports for climbing plants and vines. They can actually give the gardener more room to grow as climbing plants are among the most attractive.  Consider common jasmine or golden trumpet flowers and your fence is likely to be a focal point of the landscape. Or if you are looking for old world charm, imagine your fence covered in ivy!

•    Increased Property Value:  Lastly, if none of the mentioned reasons appeal to you, then try considering the installation of a privacy fence as an investment.  A properly installed privacy fence can add value to your property. There are many different types of privacy fence from which to choose. Investing in a beautiful design with maintenance free materials you may be able to incorporate the costs into your asking price, should you ever sell your property. The right fence can easily create the feel of more living space. You can stage your yard as space to sell during the spring, summer or fall seasons.

The reason for installing a privacy fence are endless. Your choice of the fence material is up to you.  The reason to install a wooden or vinyl privacy fence is personal to individual buyer, but it is evident that fences generally help neighbors and neighborhoods. Be sure to check your Homeowners Association (HOA) before purchasing any fence.

Topics: Residential Fence, Property Value, Fence, Top Three Reasons for Privacy Fence, Privacy Fence

The top three reasons to install a privacy fence!

Posted by Dawn Lowndes on Mon, Sep 20, 2010
There are valuable benefits of choosing a privacy fence to meet your fencing needs. Whether you are looking at either wood or vinyl fencing the main reasons is still the same.

Privacy, Security, and Increased Property Value!

PRIVACY:    The most obvious benefit to choosing a privacy fence is privacy itself. The old saying of “Good fences make good neighbors” seems ever more apparent nowadays. With homes being built closer to each other privacy has become more and more valuable.  People are choosing to turn their backyards into an exclusive getaway area. Naturally they wanted that newly captured outdoor space to be as cozy and intimate as possible.  Privacy fences can help to create spectacular patio and backyard environments for relaxing and entertaining.

privacy fence outdoor space

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SECURITY:   Security can cover several different scenarios. Being able to provide a private and safe environment for your children to play and run around. Having an area for the family pet to run and not have to worry about them escaping. The family will be much happier not being locked up in the house all day and your patio furniture will still be intact after a first-class nights sleep. Being able to deter any unwelcome people from just walking through your yard can provide a piece of mind that is priceless.

INCREASED PROPERTY VALUE:   For the above reasons more and more people find a privacy fence at a home they are considering purchasing a great selling point. Buyers will see it as one less thing they will need to take care of when choosing to purchase the home. Keeping your fence in good repair is essential to maintaining property value. The newest products offer beauty with little to no maintenance on the existing homeowner’s part.

In addition to these reasons the different kinds of privacy selections add will beauty to a property.  There are so many styles and colors to choose from in wood and vinyl materials. A well researched project will help assure that a privacy fence will be pleasing to the eye as well as creating a boundary for your property.

Article contributed by fence professional Jamie Patterson.

Topics: Fence Design, Perimeter Security, Residential Fence Choices, Residential Fence, Property Value, Fence, Top Three Reasons for Privacy Fence

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