Elephant tusk, also known as Ivory, is durable, aesthetically pleasing and can be carved rather easily. In the past, ivory has been used to make false teeth, home decor, dominoes, cutlery handles, musical instruments, billiard balls, and piano keys.
Elephants are hunted and killed for their tusks and this has diminished their population greatly. There are laws to try to stop poachers from hunting elephants but this has made ivory rare and therefore has increased its value.
Although buying and selling ivory has been banned since 1975, elephant tusks are still used all over the world but most commonly in China. There, ivory is used to make figurines, pipes, daggers, chopsticks, jewelry, ornaments, souvenirs and hair accessories.
BONUS FACT: It is popular belief that the first US president, George Washington’s false teeth were made out of wood, when in fact they were made from metal, ivory, human teeth, and animal teeth. You can see Washington’s false teeth with your own peepers at Mount Vernon, Washington’s preserved estate in Virginia.