Chrome Yellow Medium is lead chromate, obtained synthetically as a yellow crystalline powder by precipitation from a solution of a lead salt. Chrome yellow medium has excellent hiding power with bright yellow hue and high tinting strength.
Chrome was discovered by the French chemist Nicolas Louis Vauquelin in late 1790 in the mineral crocoite (lead sulfochromate). Vauquelin studied the different chrome compounds and found he could obtain a wide range of colors from greenish-yellow to orange shades.
A synthetic lead chromate (mainly chrome yellows) manufacturing process was published in 1809, although they were not mass produced until 1820 when the first large chrome deposits were discovered in North America.