long ago ideas

“When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago." - Friedrich Nietzsche. Long ago, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery conquered false claims that the Book of Mormon was fiction or that it came through a stone in a hat. But these old claims have resurfaced in recent years. To conquer them again, we have to return to what Joseph and Oliver taught.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Cumorah deniers are still at work

Earlier this week, the Cumorah deniers at Book of Mormon Central (BOMC) just added a classic Cumorah-denier article to their archive. Anyone who doubts they are teaching the two-Cumorahs theory should read this article.

I've addressed this particular article twice before, but you'd never know that because BOMC refuses to publish anything that contradicts their Cumorah-denier position. They promote the two-Cumorahs theory exclusively because they promote their Mesoamerican theory exclusively.

This article is titled "Archaeology and Cumorah Questions." You can find it here.

Yesterday I pointed out how the Cumorah deniers have invented a distinction between "Mormon's hill" in southern Mexico and "Moroni's hill" in New York. This article was one of the first to make that distinction. It is one of the clearest statements of the two-Cumorahs theory, and it's no surprise that BOMC would add it to their archive.

Here is the abstract:

"The archaeology of New York—and specifically the Hill Cumorah—is persuasive evidence that Book of Mormon peoples did not live in that region. By implication, the Cumorah of the golden plates is not the Cumorah of the final battles—Mormon’s hill and Moroni’s hill are not one and the same. These conclusions follow from a few basic points and assumptions that the author explores in this article."

Here are the links to my previous analyses of this article:




My favorite passage from the article is one which Cumorah deniers have quoted uncounted times in their own publications:

"In accord with these general observations about New York and Pennsylvania, we come to our principal object—the Hill Cumorah. Archaeologically speaking, it is a clean hill. No artifacts, no walls, no trenches, no arrowheads. The area immediately surrounding the hill is similarly clean. Pre-Columbian people did not settle or build here. This is not the place of Mormon’s last stand. We must look elsewhere for that hill.¹¹

Footnote 11 is an awesome collection of Cumorah denier bias confirmation publications: "Consult John L. Sorenson, An Ancient American Setting for the Book of Mormon (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1985), 1–95; Mormon’s Map (Provo, UT: FARMS, 2000); and The Geography of Book of Mormon Events, 209–315, 329–53; also David A. Palmer, In Search of Cumorah: New Evidences for the Book of Mormon from Ancient Mexico (Bountiful, UT: Horizon, 1981)."

Lately, the Cumorah deniers have even been spending time in southern Mexico, searching for the "real" Cumorah they imagine is there somewhere. Check this out:

Back to New York.

While the Cumorah deniers living in Utah County claim there are no artifacts on the Hill Cumorah, people who actually have lived and worked in the Palmyra area tell a different story.

Willard Bean described hundreds of artifacts he found when he was serving in the area. The Autobiography of Willard Washington Bean includes a small color photograph of some projectile points (a.k.a. arrowheads) on page 132 of Volume 2. The caption reads:

“These are a few of the many arrowheads dug up from the Hill Cumorah by Alvin Bean and his brothers, Dawn and Kelvin, while living on the Farm.”

[Note: If you don't know who Willard Bean is, you need to learn about him. Here's a good place to start.]

One woman who also lived in Cumorah as a youth related this account:

"In 1990, the church rewrote the script for the Hill Cumorah Pageant. This required that the entire front face of the Hill be torn up in order to fit the new stage. I remember at this time I was working at the Hill for the Church. My father and family were well respected, especially anything pertaining to history, artifacts, etc. Therefore, all the senior missionaries knew my father and family very well as he was often sought after for his "special" local tours. One day as I was working there, and having a great relationship with the senior missionaries, one of the elders quietly asked me to come with him. he took me to a room in the Visitor Center that was locked. Upon entering, in there were boxes upon boxes of arrow heads. He told me that during the current dig, they were uncovering all these arrow heads. The Church asked the current contracted excavator to quietly, discreetly keep all artifacts they may find and store them quickly. They did not want anything leaked to the public for fear of a mass "run" to the Hill, which could potentially cause liability issues and safety concerns during excavation. Not to mention it could hold up the process and they were on a very tight deadline for completion for the upcoming Pageant. I remember how in awe I was to see so many boxes. He told me not to touch any, and that he probably shouldn't be showing me, but he knew I would appreciate seeing these artifacts for myself, knowing how much my father and I were local historians. It wasn't but a few days later he approached me and said that when he went to the room that morning, they were all gone. He said he believed the Church had come and quietly removed them in the middle of the night for safety reasons. We can only suspect that they have also been moved to the Granite vaults."

There are other such accounts about artifacts and bones found in the immediate vicinity of the Hill Cumorah in New York. Cumorah deniers don't care about these accounts, though. They'd rather tromp through the jungles of southern Mexico and consult Google Earth in a pointless effort to "find" what Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery already told us was in New York.


  1. I especially liked the last sentence. Rofl

    By the way, I've been sharing these, when I can, on twitter and facebook. Just doing my part to try to publicize these.

  2. This ongoing "search for Cumorah" is comical, really. Can you imagine someone spending time and money climbing through the jungles in southern Mexico to find "Cumorah" when Joseph and Oliver told us where it was back in 1835? Next, these Cumorah deniers will decide Adam-ondi-Ahman can't be in Missouri and they'll go on a worldwide hunt for that site.

    One of my favorite things about the Cumorah deniers is the phony "requirements" they have established for the "real" Cumorah. It has to be near volcanoes, for example, and of course in a land of jungles, stone pyramids, etc.

    There have been 33 seasons of Survivor, with 500 episodes, but the producers are missing out by not taping Survivor: Cumorah. Maybe I'll send in a suggestion...