The gavel used by each President of the Cincinnati Chapter SAR was presented by the National Association of Real Estate Boards. This historic gavel is made of wood grown at George Washington’s home at Mount Vernon and Thomas Jefferson’s home at Monticello. The steel is from the USS Missouri, on whose quarterdeck the Japanese surrendered to General Douglas MacArthur and Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz. The gavel base is made of wood from Anthony Wayne’s elm tree found in Northside, Cincinnati, Ohio.
At a ceremony held on the evening of November 15, 1946 during NAREB’s Atlantic City convention, Mr. Chester C. Wall, representing the Mount Vernon Ladies Association, made a symbolic presentation of the wood from George Washington’s home to Mr. Boyd T. Barnard, then President of NAREB. Mr. Henry Alan Johnston, Vice President of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation, made a similar presentation of wood from Monticello. Captain Logan Ramsey, Commanding Officer, represented the United States Navy and presented the historic steel from the battleship Missouri. It was then announced that gavels would be made for presentation to each one of the Member Boards of the National Association of Real Estate Boards.
It required approximately a year and a half to season the wood and to fashion the gavels. The steel plate had to be re-melted and treated in order that it might be rolled into sheets. From these thin sheets were made the bands to encircle the gavel heads and descriptive plates for the boxes which would contain the gavels.
This gavel was presented to the Cincinnati Chapter as a memento of World War II and for the services rendered by Realtors everywhere to their country during the war years. It is a blending of the old and the new – the old ideals that guided this country through its infancy and the new strength that protected it in its days of peril.
-Compatriot George H. Stewart, Chapter Historian