Criticism of Mormonism/Websites/MormonThink/Translation of the Book of Mormon/Sources and links

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Source analysis of MormonThink page "Translation of the Book of Mormon"

A FairMormon Analysis of: MormonThink/Translation of the Book of Mormon, a work by author: Anonymous

MormonThink's practice of copying blocks of text from a variety of websites produces a very confusing citation scheme. In many cases, citation links simply lead back to the main page of an anti-Mormon website without providing a path to the actual source document. This page lists the actual cited sources and provides links to them where possible. Since MormonThink does not provide a consistent citation list, we identify quotes using the first few words.

Contemporary sources

  • "In writing for your father I frequently wrote day after day..."
    • Emma Smith Bidamon Interview with Joseph Smith III, February 1879, cited in Vogel, Early Mormon Documents, Vol. 1. p. 541.
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "Smith's wife Emma supported Harris's and Whitmer's versions of the story..."
    • Personal interview Emma Smith-Bidamon gave to a committee of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1879, cited in Robert N. Hullinger, Joseph Smith's Response to Skepticism, pp. 9-10.
  • "I will now give you a description of the manner in which the Book of Mormon was translated..."
    • David Whitmer, An Address to All Believers in Christ (Richmond, MO: n.p., 1887), 12.
    • Misdirected link—The citation "4" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the anti-Mormon countercult site "Mormons in Transition"
    • The actual source document may be read on the neutral site Wikisource here: An Address to All Believers in Christ.
  • "I, as well as all of my father's family, Smith's wife, Oliver Cowdery and Martin Harris, were present during the translation..."
    • Whitmer, An Address to All Believers in Christ, p. 12. Also, Interview given to Kansas City Journal, June 5, 1881, reprinted in the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Journal of History, vol. 8, (1910), pp. 299-300.
    • Misdirected link—The citation "5" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the anti-Mormon countercult site "Mormons in Transition"
  • "Martin Harris related an incident that occurred during the time..."
    • Edward Stevenson, "One of the Three Witnesses," Millennial Star, Vol. 44:86-87.
    • Misdirected link—The citation "7" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the anti-Mormon countercult site "Mormons in Transition"
  • "chocolate-colored, somewhat egg-shaped stone which the Prophet found while digging a well..."
    • B. H. Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, 1:129.
  • "By aid of the Seer Stone, sentences would appear..."
    • B. H. Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, 1:29.
  • "The manner in which he pretended to read and interpret..."
    • Hale, Isaac (1834), "Affidavit of Isaac Hale", in Howe, Eber Dudley, Mormonism Unvailed, Painesville, Ohio: Telegraph Press, pp. 262–66.
    • Misdirected link—The citation "8" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the anti-Mormon site "Mormons in Transition"
  • "When Joseph was translating the Book of Mormon [I] had occasion more than once to go into his immediate presence..."
    • The first-hand account of Michael Morse, Emma Smith's brother-in-law, was published in an 1879 article in the RLDS publication Saint's Herald.
  • "Now the way he translated was he put the urim and thummim into his hat..."
    • Joseph Knight, MANUSCRIPT OF THE EARLY HISTORY OF JOSEPH SMITH.
    • The website does not provide this citation.
    • The text of the entire source document may be read on the Maxwell Institute web site here: Dean C. Jessee, "Joseph Knight's Recollection of Early Mormon History".
  • "These were days never to be forgotten..."
    • Oliver Cowdery, Messenger and Advocate, Vol. 1, No. 1. p. 14.
    • Misdirected link—The citation "6" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the anti-Mormon countercult site "Mormons in Transition"
    • The source text is available on the FAIR Wiki here: Oliver Cowdery, (October 1834) Latter Day Saints' Messenger and Advocate 1:14.
  • "I have sometimes had seasons of skepticism..."
    • Dialogue, Volume 15, No 2 summer 1982, pg 51
  • "The manner in which this was done was by looking into the Urim and Thummim..."
    • Francis Kirkham, A New Witness for Christ in America 2:417
  • "A fellow by the name of Joseph Smith, who resides in the upper part of Susquehanna county..."
    • Cincinnati Advertiser, June 2, 1830
  • "through the aid of a pair of Interpreters, or spectacles - (known perhaps, in ancient days as Teraphim, or Urim and Thummim)..."
  • "The statement has been made that the Urim and Thummim was on the altar in the Manti Temple..."
    • Joseph Fielding Smith
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "he used a stone called a "Seers stone," the "Interpreters" having been taken away from him..."
    • 1885 interview, Zenas H. Gurley, RLDS Saints' Herald
  • "The Seer Stone referred to here was a chocolate-colored, somewhat egg-shaped stone..."
    • B.H. Roberts, Comprehensive History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, vol. 1, page 129
  • "The sum of the whole matter, then..."
    • B.H. Roberts, B.H. Roberts, The Seventy's Course in Theology, First Year, p.111
  • "He said there was a book deposited..."
    • History of Joseph Smith, the Prophet, 2:34-35
  • "Q: 'Was Joseph Smith not a money digger?'..."
    • Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.120
  • "accomplish some business of importance, which could not very well be done without the aid of the stone..."
    • Willard Chase, ca. 11 De4c. 1833, in E. D. Howe, Mormonism Unvailed, 241 (Also found in Dan Vogel, Early Mormon Documents 2:66
  • "For a time, the Lord took the Urim and Thummim and the plates from Joseph..."
    • 2008 Sunday School manual on Joseph Smith (Chapter 5 on repentance - first page), Quoted by Lucy Mack Smith, "The History of Lucy Smith, Mother of the Prophet," 1844-45 manuscript, book 7, p. 11, Church Archives.
  • "Mr. Harris says: "Joseph Smith, jr., found at Palmyra, N. Y., on the 22d day of September..."
  • "We were waiting on Martin Harris who was doing his best to sell a part of his farm..."
    • David Whitmer, An Address to All Believers in Christ, p.30 - p.31; B. H. Roberts quotes this entire passage in Comprehensive History of the Church, Vol. 1 pp. 162-66
  • "he asked Joseph [Smith, Jr.] whether he could not ascertain what his mission was ..."
    • Orson Pratt, 4 November 1830
  • "To our great grief, however, we soon found that Satan had been lying in wait to deceive..."
    • History of the Church, by Joseph Smith, vol. 1, pp.109-10
  • "those things which he hath written from that stone are not of me..."
    • Doctrine and Covenants 28:11
  • "Before leaving I Consecrated upon the Altar the seers Stone ..."
    • Wilford Woodruff's journal, 18 May, 1888
  • "showed me the Seerers Stone that the Prophet Joseph Smith had..."
    • Frederick Kesler diary
  • "The statement has been made that the Urim and Thummim was on the altar in the Manti Temple..."
    • Doctrines of Salvation,Vol. 3, p. 225
  • "The stone was not chocolate brown but rather the color of brown sugar..."
    • Mary Brown Firmage interview with Richard S. Van Wagoner, 11 Aug 1986. Van Wagoner papers, Marriott Library
  • "Mormon elders and women [at Kirtland] often searched the bed of the river for stones ..."
    • Newell Whitney's brother
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "found a brown colored stone about 2 1/2 inches wide and 6 inches long ..."
    • Descendants of Elias Pulsipher
  • "Joseph said there is a [seer] Stone for every person on Earth..."
    • Brigham Young, 1855
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "The president of the priests has a right to the Urim and Thummim..."
    • History of the Church 7:285
  • "Brigham Young in saying that He did not profess to be a prophet seer & Revelator as Joseph Smith was..."
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "Do not seek for those who have peepstones, for soothsayers, and for those who profess to be able to counteract the influence of witchcraft..."
  • "He has but little encouragement to offer for the use of seer stones..."
  • "peep-stones, in the hands of silly and irresponsible people..."
  • "There are men among us, holding the Holy Priesthood, who in events of their lives would rather stare into a bit of flint-glass..."
  • "Then the white stone mentioned in Revelation ..."
    • D&C 130: 10-11
  • "It hardly seems reasonable to suppose that the prophet would substitute something evidently inferior [to the U&T] under these circumstances..."
    • Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation vol.3 pg 225-226
  • "I was at the house of his father in Manchester, two miles south of Palmyra village,..."
  • "Aside from the inaccurate translation pictures in the Ensign, the church continues to show the Joseph Smith Movie..."
    • Misdirected link—The citation "Joseph Smith Movied" does not link to the text of the actual source document, but instead links to the main page of the ex-Mormon message board site "Mormon Curtain"

Other sources

  • "The article corroborates the 'stone in the hat' version of the translation..."
  • "His reticence was probably well justified..."
    • Stephen Ricks
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "Mr. Stowel was at this time at old Mr. Smith's digging for money..."
    • An interview with Martin Harris, published in Tiffany's Monthly, 1859, p.165
  • "I will tell you a wonderful thing that happened after Joseph had found the plates..."
    • Testimony of Mrs. Comfort Godfrey Flinders, Utah Pioneer Biographies, vol. 10, p.65, Genealogical Society of Utah, as cited in an unpublished manuscript by LaMar Petersen
  • "Warrant issued upon written complaint upon oath of Peter G. Bridgeman..."
  • Joseph Smith's 1826 court transcript; see Abanes, One Nation Under Gods, p. 501
  • "if this court record is authentic it is the most damning evidence..."
    • Hugh Nibley, The Myth Makers
  • "the term Urim and Thummim (first used by W. W. Phelps in 1833), which is generally associated with the Nephite interpreters..."
    • Stephen Ricks
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "Thus, "it" (Joseph's gift) was restored to him, but there is no indication that the Nephite interpreters (Urim and Thummim) were also returned..."
  • "angel purportedly took back the plates and Urim and Thummim after losing the lost 116 pages..."
  • "Hiel Lewis (Emma's cousin) stated that Joseph used the peep stone..."
    • Hiel Lewis, "Review of Mormonism: Rejoinder to Elder Cadwell." Amboy Journal, June 4, 1879, Quoted in Quinn, 172.
  • "The manner in which he pretended to read and interpret, was the same as when he looked for money-diggers..."
    • Isaac Hale, Howe, 264
  • "Joe Smith never handled one shovel of earth in those diggings [treasure hunts]...."
    • Alva Hale, Quoted in Joseph Lewis, "Review of Mormonism," Amboy Journal, June 11, 1879, cited in David Persuitte, Joseph Smith and the Origins of the Book of Mormon (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2000), 38
  • "In the trial transcript of the 1826 Trial in Bainbridge, NY it says: Prisoner examined: says... That he had a certain stone ..."
  • "In the trial transcript of 1826 Trial in Bainbridge: Jonathan Thompson "says that prisoner [Joseph Smith] was requested to look for a chest of money..."
  • "church president Smith continued to discover new seer stones ..."
    • Early Mormonism and the Magic World View, p. 245 - 246 cited in Salt Lake City Messenger Issue No. 105
  • "The order of translation in turn bears on the date of section 10..."
    • Richard Bushman
    • The website does not provide this citation.
  • "The details of this miraculous method of translation are still not fully known. Yet ..."
  • "Once Martin found a rock closely resembling the seerstone ..."
    • Kenneth Godfrey, "A New Prophet and a New Scripture," Ensign, Jan. 1988
  • "In imitation of the true order of heaven where seers receive revelation from God..."
    • Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine

Critical works

  • Changing World of Mormonism
  • Mormonism: Shadow or Reality by Jerald and Sandra Tanner. Chapter 4, page 77.
  • Mormonism and the Magic World View, Michael Quinn
  • An Insider's View of Mormon Origins, Chapter 1, Grant Palmer
  • Joseph Smith's Bainbridge, N.Y., Court Trials, Wesley P. Walters, pp. 129-131
  • Inventing Mormonism: Tradition and the Historical Record, Michael Marquardt

Positive works

  • Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 120
  • Comprehensive History of the Church, Vol. 1, page 129

Other works

  • Dialogue, Volume 15, No 2 summer 1982, pg 48-68
  • I.A.5, LUCY SMITH HISTORY, 1845, 1853:107

Critical links

Non-critical links

Broken links