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The Hill Cumorah is the key to locating the lost lands of the Book of Mormon
It is the opinion of numerous scholars that western New York was the scene of a terrible exterminating battle. As one author said: "The opinion is expressed in all those relic halls that western New York was the site of an ancient battlefield. There is more evidence of a well planned defensive warfare in that locality than there is in any other region on the American continent. It is the opinion of most scholars that the defenses on the drumlin hills were prepared by a people more civilized than the Indians and were exterminated by the inferior race who were still in possession of the country when Columbus discovered the land." (1)
Professor O. Turner did not hestitate to consider all the fortified hills in western New York as having been erected by "a race which peopled this country before the Indians " He went on to say: ". . . there is perhaps no portion of the United States where ancient relics are more numerous. Commencing near Oswego River, they extend westward all over the western counties of the state. . . . The evidence that this was one, at least, of their final battlefields, predominate. They are the fortifications, entrenchments, and warlike instruments of an extinct race. That here was war of extermination we may well conclude from the masses of human skeletons we find indiscriminately thrown together, indicating a common and simultaneous sepulture from which age, infancy, sex and no condition was exempt. " (2) In his research of the region for the Smithsonian Institute, E. G. Squire found hundreds of such fortified sites extending from the counties of St. Lawrence on the north, to Chautauqua on the south, and embracing the counties of Jefferson, Oswego, Onondaga, Oneida, Cayuga, Seneca, Ontario, Wayne, Monroe, Livingston, Orleans, Niagara, Erie, and Genesee, Cattaraugus, and Allegheny. More than 1,000 sites were found in Ontario, Livingston, Genesee and Monroe Counties alone,with Ontario County the location of the Hill Cumorah. Nearly 500 sites were found in Monroe County not far from Palymyra, and over a 100 fortified hilltops and strongholds in neighboring Genesee County, all no doubt part of the Nephite's land of Cumorah.
Henry Clyde Shetrone was another who noticed the strategic position of the fortifications which covered so many of western New York's hills, which he noted were often equipped with palisades set into their low earthen walls.He mentions that the people of this region: " . . . once presented a scene of war, and war in its most horrible form, where blood is the object, . . That it was here that a feeble band was collected, a remnant of mighty battles fought in vain, to make a last effort for the country of their birth, the ashes of their ancestors and the altars of their gods. That the crisis was met with fortitude, and sustained with valor, need not be doubted. . . . But their efforts were vain, and flight or death were the alternatives. (3)
After researching the region, B. H. Roberts said: " . . These described fortifications and burial mounds make it clear that western New York at some time has been the scene of destructive battles; and the fact constitutes strong presumptive evidence of the statements of the Book of Mormon that great battles were fought there." (4)
The location of Book of Mormon events has been the source of continuing controversy, with no official site yet sanctioned by the Church. But, after fifteen years of extensive study of the Book of Mormon using the New York setting at a time when primeval forests and ancient waters filled the land, a setting emerged which meets all the requirements needed to be the actual lands of the Book of Mormon. While the saga played out in the Book of Mormon was centered chiefly in western New York just off the shores of Lake Erie, in my latest book, The Lost Sheep of Ancient America, the reader will note that the archaeological record follows the ancient inhabitants of New York into a number of outlying regions until they ultimately spanned much of eastern North America from the Atlantic to the Mississippi, and beyond. Those who favor the Heartland Theory for Book of Mormon events will find ample evidence of ties between those in New York and Illinois as the Nephites spread west into Hopewell territory. While a large number of Nephite were numbered among the Hopewell, the reader will also discover that not all the Hopewell were Nephites, notwithstanding they too carried the blood of Israel. With the fall of the Hopewell, those not killed in battle, were sent on a long migration southward into Mexico where Hebrew traditions continued in that region as well. A review of all the videos featured in our Video Gallery will help clarify these issues further. But, for now, a look at the basic New York setting seems to be in order, and is presented here for your consideration.
Segments of this 30 minute video will be shown on various linking pages for those interested in just one aspect of Book of Mormon geography, such as the narrow neck of land, the river sidon, the weather-etc. The video is shown again on the linking page entitled, Book of Mormon Goegraphy in a nutshell.
There have been numerous attempts to locate the lands of the Book of Mormon over the years. As each new theory arises, we gain fresh hope of acquiring additional insights into the location of the lost lands of the Book of Mormon, but all too often we are disappointed. Perhaps the time has come to concentrate more heavily on those lands surrounding the only known landmark we have of the Book of Mormon saga - the Hill Cumorah in New York State, the very place the record of the Nephites were deposited by Moroni, the son of Mormon, the last Nephite prophet to walk the land after the destruction of his people.
The heartbreaking scene of Mormon lamenting the loss of his people as he stood on the Hill Cumorah and looked out over the scene of destruction before him after the Battle of Cumorah is captured in this short video presented by the LDS Church. As Mormon and his son Moroni behold the hundreds of thousands of Nephites slain in the last battle with the Lamanites, Mormon laments, "O ye fair ones, how could ye have departed from the ways of the Lord!" (Mormon 6:17)
Oh Ye Fair Ones
Oh Ye Fair Ones
New York's Hill Cumorah Shows Evidence of Terrible Warfare
1-McGavin & Bean, Geography of the Book of Mormon, pp 78-78.
2-O. Turner, Pioneer History of the Holland Land Purchase of Western New York , p. 20.
3-McGavin & Bean, Geography of the Book of Mormon, p. 84.
4-B.H.Roberts, New Witness for God, vol. 3, p. 73.
My newest and most comprehensive work, The Lost Sheep of Ancient America, takes the reader through 4000 years of history from the tower of Babel to the Restoration. As the work moves along, the reader will discover that others besides the Nephites and Jaredites lived in the Promised Land in the early centuries B.C., including Giants, Druids, and various Celtic races, all of which played some part in the pre-history of America. Moreover, all the available evidence points to the overwhelming presence of the royal lines of Israel's tribe of Juda, both the line of Perez, who fathered the Mulekites, and the people of his twin brother, Zarah, who spawned a line of kings throughout much of the western world and the Americas. The merger of the two lines in northestern America, along with the Nephites from the tribe of Joseph, he who held the birthright in Israel, presents a whole new picture of the New World and its ancient occupants than has previously been known. Anyone interested in history and the Book of Mormon will find this book fascinating. (The book is due to be released sometime in the fall/winter of 2015) Other books on the subject can be viewed on the linking Bookstore of this website.
-Soon to be released- The Lost Sheep of Ancient America
The Hill Cumorah
Book of Mormon Lands of Western New York