24 July 2015

What to do if your instrument has ivory on it

I haven't updated this is awhile. There have been good developments, and bad developments.
New York and New Jersey have pursued bans that include Mastodon ivory. Other states have paused the banning process, as more data rolls in that such measures do little if nothing to protect living elephants.

The market for poached ivory is not in the US; it is primarily in Asia. Ivory has not been legally imported since the 1970s, and there is little demand for raw ivory. Nobody buys a bow BECAUSE it has an ivory tip; they buy a bow because it is by Tourte or Pecatte and it *happens* to have an ivory tip. There is no market for ivory in the US that is worth the effort of smuggling.

I can't say for certain that is true of the antiques forgeries market, but I would imagine that we are talking international art forgeries here, not tourist trinkets, and purchasers of art forgeries on that level are pretty much ignoring laws anyway.

However, what if you, poor musician, have an older instrument that does indeed have ivory on it? What can you do?

These folks have created one of the best discussions of this I have seen. Rather than reiterate, I will simply link to them here: