Lt. Gov. Dan Forest will gavel the N.C. Senate to session Monday with new oomph.
House Speaker Thom Tillis surprised Forest and presented him with a new gavel (at right) made from heart pine during Saturday's Mecklenburg Lincoln-Reagan Day Dinner. It is made from the same wood as Tillis' gavel.
On Tillis' Facebook page, he writes that the wood comes from the state tree, the Long Leaf Pine. "The tree was a sapling around the time of the founding of our nation. It was felled around 1825 and used to build a house near Speed, North Carolina. The house was "visited" by Sherman's troops during the Civil War but the house was not destroyed. 150 years later it was used to turn historic gavels now in the hands of the leaders of the NC Senate and NC House. I am proud to share that history with my friend and my Lt. Governor," Tillis wrote. Find more on the wood's origin here.