Thanks phinds. My mother called her tree sweet gum years ago. It's always referred to as liquid amber out here.phinds said:I'm also guessing sweet gum/red gum (your piece would be called red gum) Treesguy, sweet gum is Liquidambar styraciflua and thus is sometimes called by the genus name, liquidamber
Yes, the end grain difference between sweet gum and hickory are very noticeable, as you can see on my site. You probably don't even have to go so far as a razor cut, just a fine-sanded end piece will show it up.Sweetgum would certainly fit with your area. I'll also throw out the possibility of hickory. If you can cut the end with a razor or very sharp knife so you can see the cells, then go to a tree ID site, it should be pretty easy to tell.