The Petoskey stone was designated Michigan's official stone by none other than Mitt Romney's father, Gov. George Romney.
UNCONFIRMED: A White House photo of President Barack Obama playing with a pebble-shaped rock on his desk in the Oval Office has started a new rumor: is that Obama's pet stone? Although we haven't been able to confirm whether the shining Petoskey is his favorite stone or not, the Detroit Free Press reports that the stone is a gift from Bailey's Place Petoskey Stones & Stuff in Petoskey, Mich.
The Petoskey was reportedly purchased in 2011 by Patti Lease who is close friends with White House photographer Pete Souza, the same person who took the photo.
The Petoskey is a coral that lived 350 million years ago during the Devonian period. Its scientific name is Hexagonaria percarinata (Hexagonaria meaning it has six sides). According to the State of Michigan's website, "The name Petoskey Stone likely came about because it was found and sold as a souvenir from the Petoskey area."
Apparently, Obama "liked the stone and its shiny, hexagonal pattern" so much that he decided to place it on the Resolute desk in the Oval Office.
John Bassette, who sanded the stone to bring out its geometric pattern, was unaware that the president had it on his desk until he came across the official White House photo on the Internet. The photo has been making the rounds of local Michigan blogs and Facebook posts since then.
However, the White House has yet to confirm that the Petoskey is Obama's "pet stone."
Fun fact: Petoskey was designated the official state stone of Michigan in 1965 by Gov. George Romney, father of Mitt Romney, who was born in Michigan.