Q: I was told years ago that this is an old Eskimo fishhook. It's made of wood and has a "tooth-like" hook that looks like it might be whale's tooth or ivory. It's held together by narrow leather straps. No one has any idea what it really is and how old it is. Can you give me a clue?
A: Fishhooks like yours have been used for more than 2,000 years by Eskimo tribes living along the southwestern coast of Alaska. This particular type was used by the Koniagmiut and Chugach tribes. The hook is large enough to catch fish weighing up to 450 pounds.