Did you watch President Joe Biden’s State of the Union Address last night?

I know it was Mardi Gras yesterday and the State of the Union was late last night but if you tuned into the speech, you may have noticed something strange that was in the camera shot.

Now I must admit that I only watched a few minutes of the speech before I had to get the kiddos to bed but one of the first comments I made was, “what is that on Nancy Pelosi’s desk?” No one in my house seemed to know what it was but the question did spark a lively debate with my oldest son who is four. After a few minutes of discussion, we decided that it was a boat that was on her desk. I went to bed knowing it probably wasn’t a boat but figured I would never know the real answer and then Twitter came to the rescue.

It seems that several other people had the same question I did and took to Twitter to ask if others knew the answer.

So here is the answer of what was on Nancy Pelosi’s desk during the State of the Union Address:
According to the House of Representatives website, it is a coin-silver inkstand that is placed in the rostrum before the speaker calls each session of the House to order. It is believed that this inkstand was created sometime around 1815 by Jacob Leonard.


"The inkstand is considered the oldest surviving artifact of the House and was made between 1810 and 1820," the House website said. "Although its origins are mysterious, it most likely came into the House around 1819. The inkstand is stamped with the mark of J. Leonard, a Washington silversmith, and watchmaker."

So this inkwell is not new to the State of the Union Addresses but for some reason, I have never noticed it before last night. I even went back and looked for it in pictures of the previous addresses and as you can see in the tweet below it was in fact there when President Trump gave his final address in front of Congress.


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