they were able to melt metals?????? and better yet were did the metals come from???
The principal sources of silver are copper, copper-nickel, gold, lead, and lead-zinc ores obtained from Canada, (such as Cobalt, Ontario); Mexico (such as Batopilas); Peru; Bolivia; Australia; and the United States.
Through its Bolivian subsidiary, Sinchi Wayra (which it acquired in 2005), Glencore operates six businesses in Bolivia that mine and process tin, silver, gold and zinc.   ; notable among these has been Empresa Metalurgica Vinto, reportedly the world's largest privately-run smelter complex, located in the department of Oruro, which was seized and nationalized by Bolivian President Evo Morales on February 9, 2007. At the time of the seizure there were no plans to compensate Glencore. 
Nickle in Chile:
Demand for the mercury compound vermilion was strong enough to support a large-scale mercury mining industry in the Andes as far back as 1400 B.C., according to a new study
Increasing levels of mercury pollution in sediments from two nearby lakes indicated the ancient mercury mining. The mining had started long before the Chavín culture—which Cooke described as "the cradle of complex Andean culture"—peaked, between 800 B.C. and 400 B.C. in central Peru.
Edited by Abramelin, 05 January 2010 - 05:40 PM.