This section is from the book "Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry, And Building", by James C. et al. Also available from Amazon: Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry And Building.
Cherry is a wood which is frequently used as a finishing wood for the interior of dwellings and of cars and steamers, but, owing to the fact that it can be obtained only in narrow boards, it is most suitable for molded work, and work which is much cut up. The wood is heavy, hard, strong, and of fine texture. The heartwood is of a reddish brown color, while the sapwood is yellowish white. It is very handsome and takes a good polish, works easily, and stands well. It shrinks considerably, however, in drying. The timber is cut from the wild black cherry tree, not from the cultivated cherry tree. This tree is of medium size, and is found scattered among the other broad-leaved trees along the western slopes of the Alle-ghenies, and as far west as Texas. The fruit of the wild cherry is of a dark purple color, about the size of a large pea. When ripe it tastes slightly bitter. The bark of the tree also tastes bitter. Cherry is often stained to resemble mahogany, and sometimes birch is stained to resemble cherry.
Chestnut The grain of chestnut somewhat resembles oak but it is much softer and coarser in texture and does not show the medullary rays which form the distinguishing feature of oak. Chestnut is used for cabinet work, for interior finishing, and sometimes for heavy construction. It is light, fairly soft, but not strong. The wood has a rather coarse texture, works easily and stands well, but shrinks and checks in drying. It is very durable and can be safely used in exposed positions. The tree grows in the region of the Alleghenies, from Maine to Michigan, and southward to Alabama. The wood is dark brown in color, with the sapwood a little lighter.