Elephant tusks from Kenya

Elephant tusks from Kenya

I received this morning an email from South Africa, if anyone has any information or suggestions it would be greatly appreciated.

Need some help locating the whereabouts of a pair of tusks. The jumbo was shot by my brother-in-laws late father, Mr. F Janse Van Rensburg. The old man was farming in the Eldoret area in Kenya up and till the late 1950's. They used to go jumbo hunting on a regular basis. The elephant in question was shot in 1949 on the Tana river close to Garrisa. Weights were, as we can recall 147 and 148 lb's. Their lengths were +- 11 feet. The old man used a .425 WR. We know that they were displayed at the Nairobi train station for some time. What happened to them then is a mistery.
Your input would be greatly appreciated


I don't know if you still have the contact information for the individual that sent you the above question but I may have run across some additional information.

According to Tony Sanchez-Arino, in his book, this set of ivory weighed 172/169. they were 11'2" and 11' in length.

Fanie van Rensburg sold the ivory to Safariland (The old Newland & Tarlton Limited) for 200GBP. The ivory was on display in Safariland's offices in Nairobi, for hunters to admire. The tusks were sold to an American in 1960 for 1,000 GBP. The trail ends there. Hopefully they will reappear in a museum somewhere. Evidently they are the second longest behind the pair in the Bronx Zoo. ( Not sure if they are still on display)
Very interesting info......thankfully they were not left in Kenya, which recently burned $200 million worth of ivory. Can't have that pesky stuff lying around....no telling what it might do. Would have been a shame to destroy those magnificent tusks..........Thanks for posting......................FWB
@Wheels the American buyer likely has them in his trophy room, where he regales visitors, telling the tale of the hunt whereupon he slayed the massive beast. Little do they know, the set was purchased for a paltry 1,000 GBP!
Since this was 59 years ago, the chances of the individual who purchased the tusks still being alive is growing slim. My hope is that they show up in a museum at some point so the public will appreciate them.

I have been fortunate to see a similar sized pair of ivory (weight), in an individuals home here in the states. The individual has never hunted Africa. Not sure how he came into possession of them, but in no way does he act like he shot the bull. He knows the ivory is special and that he is the current steward. Have a feeling an heir will end up with the ivory.

Hopefully they end up like rare paintings and will pop in the public domain within a couple hundred years.(y)
@flatwater bill Glad they weren't burned as well. I'm not sure the status of privately owned ivory in Kenya, but would imagine it can still be owned and would not be destroyed.

In the 60's, one of my fathers friends had a nice set in his house from an elephant he had shot. If I remember correct they were 130's / 90's. (I could be wrong on those numbers) After independence, Tanzania went socialist/communist and many larger assets were nationalized. Hunting was abolished around 1973 and my fathers friend sold the ivory for fear that it would be confiscated. I am still in contact with the family and it is unfortunate that they are not able to still have the ivory. We used to have a photo but unfortunately I haven't seen it in years. It was probably thrown out with other items after my parents passed away.
Tana River - Garissa County - Tsavo
This isosceles triangle was probably the best elephant area in the 20th century after WW 1
The informations from the Congo do not withstand this quality.
Unfortunately there are few to no records of the Belgians from their former colony about (elephant) hunting.
The Belgian bullet manufacturer Wim Degol (and eager hunter) told me, he knows not a single hunting book of his compatriots from that time.

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