Located in the Core Galleries on Level 2
The Indiana State Museum has unveiled a previously unknown artifact from Abraham Lincoln’s life in Indiana. Lincoln’s bench mallet (circa 1829) is on public display for the first time in 188 years at the museum. This artifact was originally a splitting maul used by Lincoln to drive iron wedges into logs creating split-rails for fencing. The maul head, made from a tree root-ball, eventually split in half. Rather than discard the tool, Lincoln repurposed it into a bench mallet he used to drive pegs into furniture and other fixtures. Lincoln discarded the original long handle and relocated a shorter grip into the remaining portion of the maul to create a mallet.