“It was a very emotional time for many people when the oak trees were cut down this past spring,” said Jack Ponder, media specialist for the high school side of the Drew/Lincoln School Library. “We wanted a way to commemorate that because it meant so much to so many people in the Lincoln area.”
Ponder said when the trees were cut down, the city was giving the wood away for firewood and library instruction assistant Nancy Pitts, who is a 1977 graduate of Lincoln High School, got some of the wood.
“Natalie Martin, media specialist for the Drew Middle School side of the library, has a father, Everett Martin, who is a woodturner,” he said. “He volunteered his time and expertise to craft these pens, which is an ongoing process.”
Ponder said the pens are available at the Drew/Lincoln School Library for a minimum $25 donation per pen. For an additional $10 per line, the pen can be personalized with laser etching. All proceeds benefit the Drew/Lincoln School Library, and will go toward the purchase of materials to keep the library current.
“My brother, Johnny Ponder, volunteered to do the laser etching for us at no charge,” Ponder said. “Many people choose the name, LHS or Lincoln High School, and/or the year they graduated.”
Ponder said two engraving examples are:
LHS Class of 1970
Lincoln High School
“We actually sold a pen to a lady as a gift for her grandmother, who graduated from Lincoln High School in 1916 and is still alive,” he said.
Ponder said many people in the community were heartbroken over the loss of the trees, and the commemorative pens are a way to turn a negative into a positive.
“It means a lot me,” he said. “Even though I didn’t graduate from Lincoln High School, I’ve been here 15 years and walked underneath those oak trees every day when I taught at the old high school.”
Ponder said there is a limited amount of wood available to make the pens with.
“When the pens are gone — they’re gone,” he said.
Ponder said there are often pens in stock at the library, and individuals may call 256-315-5299 to see if pens are there available for purchase. Checks should be mailed to Lincoln High School, Attn: Jack Ponder, 78989 AL HWY 77, Lincoln, AL 35096. Checks should be made payable to Lincoln High School and in the place for memo, write “Library Donation.” Due to accounting requirements, ensure the check has two valid phone numbers.
When payment is received and the pen is ready, you will be contacted to come by the school and get your pen. If you would like the pen mailed to you, include an additional $6 (USPS Flat Rate Box) and the correct mailing address.
For more information, call 256-315-5299 or email Jack Ponder at firstname.lastname@example.org or Natalie Martin at email@example.com.