Skip Content
U.S. Flag

Gavel, Senate

Title Gavel, Senate
Artist/Maker Unidentified
Date n.d.
Medium Ivory, silver
Dimensions h. 2.63; diam. 1.5 in. (h. 6.7; diam. 3.8 cm)
Credit Line U.S. Senate Collection
Accession Number 71.00001.000

  • Object Description
  • Perhaps the most revered historic artifact in the Senate is the gavel. This small, handleless piece of solid ivory was used by the Senate's presiding officers from around the late 18th/early 19th century until a late night debate in 1954, when the gavel fell apart as Vice President Richard Nixon called the Senate to order. Having already been reinforced once—with silver pieces attached to both ends—the gavel was immediately replaced with a near-replica provided by the government of India.

    When the Senate is in session the replacement gavel is used to call the chamber to order.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

  • Related Objects
  • Senate Exhibitions & Publications
  • Life Under the Dome: Tools of the Senate Chamber (Digital Collection)
  • Rights and Reproduction
  • Policies, Permissions, and Copyright
other ***t/art-artifacts/resources/graphics/thumbnail/71_00001_000_a.jpgt***