National Geographic : 1937 Sep
Photograph from Ewing Galloway NOT LAUNDRY, BUT PLATINUM, IS WASHED IN CRUDE PANS BY COLOMBIAN WOMEN ALONG THE SHORES OF SAN JUAN RIVER This simple placer method of separating precious metal from sand has not changed here since the Conquistadores came. Platinum's value was unknown inthose days. Taking millions of dollars worth of gold from Colombian streams for Spanish invaders, natives threw platinum backinto the water as "unripened" gold (page 345). Because counterfeiters gilded the pale metal and passed it as gold in the form of coins and ingots, platinum was for a time refused entry into Spain and Portugal.