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Butterfly wire tensioner – Swastika mark
Forestry Memories
No: 4145   Contributor: Norman Davidson   Year: 1980
Butterfly wire tensioner – Swastika mark

The picture is courtesy of Malcolm Wield, Glenurquhart, who writes:

‘This old butterfly wire tensioner was given to me by Fred Webster, Head Forester at Barcaldine, around 1980. He had recovered it from a 1930’s fence above the main block, although it could have appeared later during a period of fence maintenance’.

Searches have indicated that there are several instances of this Swastika marked tensioner appearing in other localities.

One theory is that it may have been produced in Germany after 1935 when the swastika was adopted as the national emblem and manufacturers were encouraged to use the design.

The swastika symbol appears to have its very distant origins of many thousands of years ago in Asia and in particular India as a symbol of divinity and spirituality and was used thereafter in many cultures with both clockwise and anti clockwise turns (In Sanskrit - swastika and sauvastika) and also with the inclusion of dots or other marks. It is still an important symbol in the religions of India.

Malcolm has also discovered that the Swastik Wire Company in Nagpur in India uses this symbol and currently produces many wire products and no doubt exports around the world. It is possible that this or other companies supplied products, with the mark embedded, to wire suppliers in the UK and they then appeared in fences.

Does anyone know of these Swastika marked products being used elsewhere and their source?

Any information would be very welcome.

Picture added on 31 July 2018 at 14:55
This picture is in the following groups
Mystery and unknown
Tools, equipment and clothing
add commentComments:
These tensioners were used in the fence along the front of the Swedish Houses in Ardentinny and for all I know they may still be there. Ian Adams may be able to check. Whether they were used in the original fence in the late Forties/early Fifties, or in a later repair is not known. :-)

There was also a discussion on these on the Secret Scotland website a few years ago.

Added by Andy MacNicol on 31 July 2018.
A box of the same type of tensioners that had never been used with swastikas on them were found in the sawmill workshop on Lour estate in the early nineteen sixties, also a water can used for the tractor radiator made of the same dark blue metal with a swastika on the bottom.

Added by Leslie Phillip on 02 August 2018.
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