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Gold panning, 1916. Prospector panning for gold in Alaska, USA. Panning involves swirling gravel from a stream or river in water in a shallow dish. The lighter stones and rocks will be lost, while the heavier metal ores, such as gold and silver, will be left behind. Gold was discovered in Nome, Alaska, in 1899, leading to a gold rush of prospectors to the area that lasted until around 1909.
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