PRUSSIC ACID—Would like to know what the prussic acid is used for in washing gold.
The Prussic acid (Cyanide of Potassium) is used by prospectors to separate gold, after it is “milled” from any substance which may be in chemical combination with it; for example—oxygen, thus forming cyanide of gold; then metallic zinc is added and the metallic gold is set free. The residue makes cyanide of zinc which is refuse.
Harding, A.R.. 3001 Questions and Answers. Columbus, Oh: A.R. Harding, 1913.
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