The Chimú produced artisanal gold embossed with intricate designs. Soon after the Inca conquered the Chimú, Spaniards came seeking gold. What they collected, they melted down into ingots, or blocks, ignoring and destroying the detailed artwork.
Text Source: Stuart, George E. Ancient Pioneers: The First Americans. Washington, DC: National Geographic Society, 2001. National Geographic Virtual Library.
- Joel Sartore/National Geographic Creative