Question: Was the Limited Geography model created in response to DNA claims?

FairMormon Answers Wiki Table of Contents

Question: Was the Limited Geography model created in response to DNA claims?

The Limited Geography Model was introduced in 1927, many years before DNA claims

Was the Limited Geography model created in respond to DNA claims? The answer is no. The idea that Lehi's party entered a larger, pre-existing New World population was introduced as early as 1927, well before the Book of Mormon was being challenged on issues related to DNA. [1] Limited Geography Models in General have been present since at least 10 years before that.

An examination of both Part 1 and Part 2 of John Sorenson's 1984 Ensign articles quickly shows that they do not even contain the term "DNA". The articles focus on anthropological and geographical topics which support the Limited Geography model.

I have said repeatedly that the correspondences in geography, history, and cultural patterns—large scale or micro-scale—between Mesoamerican cultures and the Book of Mormon peoples do not “prove” anything conclusively. Still, the fact that large numbers of such correspondences exist ought to register in the minds of truth-loving people. With this in mind, it is clearly misleading for a scholar—one of our own—to imply that there is no “important archaeological evidence” to support the Book of Mormon story “of Indian origins,” or for another to find it amusing to think that anyone would seriously try to compare the Book of Mormon with objective facts of historical importance. [2]

The Sorenson map of Book of Mormon lands as it appeared in the September 1984 church magazine, the Ensign. This map may be viewed on the official Church website


  1. Janne M Sjodahl, An Introduction to the Study of the Book of Mormon (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1927).
  2. John L. Sorenson, "Digging into the Book of Mormon: Our Changing Understanding of Ancient America and Its Scripture, Part 2," Ensign 14 (October 1984).