In this modern technological world, people often take wire for granted, but have you ever wondered how it came to be, who invented different types of wire, and what it was first used for? Here is a short history of the making of wire across the globe.
About 2,000 BCE, wire was made from pounded strings of gold that could be easily twisted into a spiral and heated to add more length when desired. Gold was the standard for metal work for several centuries in the Old World and eventually the Bronze, and Iron Ages introduces other metals that the indigenous people used for jewelry and decorations. Drawn and round wires became popular during the medieval period, and foundries were invented specifically for iron working during the 1400s.
Modern times have shown uses for wire that ancient man could never have dreamed about. You may even take for granted different types of stainless steel wire such as ASTM F899, which was unknown even a hundred years ago. You can find almost any type of wire you want online or in nearby stores. The most common are platinum, cooper, bronze, gold, and silver – many of which can be found bare or wrapped in plastic casings. Today metals are mixed to form special wires such as tungsten and other filament strings that are the width of a human hair.
Wire is used in everything you use in your daily life and far beyond. From building space stations, dental works, computers, to telephones, intricate jewelry, and appliances. Instruments are strung with wire, homes are electrified with wire, and cars are powered with wire.
The use of wire has come a long way since ancient man first used those gold strands to make beautiful jewelry. Imagine what uses humans will find for wire in the next 100 years – exciting discoveries for sure!