New York Library Association. - The eBulletin

From the Archives

Many a NYLA member has seen the organization’s President wield the unusual gavel at the annual meeting.  Thanks to Mary Redmond at the State Library we now have more information about that gavel.  While researching NYLA’s various anniversaries, she found this piece of information from 1965, the year of NYLA’s 75th Anniversary:

The following is from the NYLA Bulletin, Vol. 13 #4, October-December 1965, p. 95

Gavel Presented to NYLA

An historic gavel was brought into use at this meeting.  It had been presented to the New York Library Association by the Johnstown Public Library in honor of Sir William Johnson the illustrious founder of our city, who was superintendent of Indian affairs for the whole of British North America and the most influential man of his times in the American colonies.
This gavel was made from a black walnut tree said to have been planted by Sir William Johnson about 1765.  This tree stood on the grounds of Sir William Johnson’s home or hall commonly known at Johnstown, New York, until it became a menace to adjacent buildings when it was cut down in 1926.  The gavel is a replica of one of the set used in St. Patrick’s Lodge No. 4, F & A M founded by Sir William Johnson in 1765 now being No. 3 in the State of New York.

Courtesy of the State Library, Manuscripts/Special Collections

Photo - Sara Kelly Johns Passes NYLA Gavel to Geoff Kirkpatrick