Sunday, April 11, 2010

Tilting the United States Map

In order for Great Lakes Theorists to place the Book of Mormon lands around the focal point of their model—-the Hill Cumorah—-Goble and May have to skew the land, tilt cardinal compass points, and place cities and lands completely out of context with the scriptures, which they try to accommodate by tilting the United States 90º to get their north-south orientation.

In order to align their map of the Great Lakes Region and the Mississippi Valley to Book of Mormon criteria, Goble and May tilt their map so Louisiana is directly south of Cumorah in Pennsylvania, and on a direct line south of the state of Main. They place Bountiful in Virginia, the Land of Nephi in Arkansas, west of their River Sidon (Mississippi River), Land of Zarahemla in Missouri west of the River Sidon, and over 1,000 miles from Bountiful on a northeast line (however, in an actual map, the direction between these two would be almost due east).

They also name Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Erie and Lake Huron as the Sea West, though these are completely landlocked from the area of First landing which they place in Louisiana, some 1200 miles away. Their East Sea, the Atlantic Ocean, is some 900 miles to the east of the Land of Nephi, though the scriptures tell us that the Land of Nephi bordered on the east sea and the West Sea, totally ignored by Goble and May. One could go on with this map, but the ludicrous nature of it makes the effort unnecessary.

On another map, May shows what he calls “Ideal Book of Mormon Geography” map just as illustrated in the Book of Mormon, then turns that map 90º to the right, which does not show any sea correlation to his map, and suggests the reader compare the map with his own map overlay of the Eastern United States, which he has shown an arrow pointing about 45º off the cardinal points.

Goble and May also place the narrow neck of land between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario since the word Niagara (in Niagara Falls which is at this location) means “neck.” Thus, they have their narrow neck separating two of their West Seas, but over 400 miles from their East Sea, making a day and a half journey for a Nephite (Alma 22:32) impossible. In addition this neck runs north and south, instead of east to west.

While Hagoth’s ships sailed north from the West Sea setting out from the area near Bountiful (Alma 63:5-6), Goble and May have Bountiful placed about 400 miles to the southeast, making such a voyage from that location impossible.

The scriptures tell us the Land of Zarahemla and the Land of Nephi were nearly surrounded by water, and that both lands ran from the west sea to the east sea. However, Duane Aston (in his books Cumorah and Return to Cumorah) have the east sea is to the north of his Zarahemla (Lake Ontario) and also to the north of his Land of Nephi, and impossible to have any access to the east of either land.

One could go on and on about these Great Lakes Theorists and their ridiculous placement of Book of Mormon geography contrary to the scriptural location, but the point should be clear that just because Joseph Smith retrieved the gold plates from the Hill Cumorah in upper New York State, does not mean that there was not another Hill Cumorah in another land, called the Land of Promise. The Lord is not beyond moving sacred items from one area to another.

Remember, that Bountiful was an important location where Nephi built his ship and from which the Lehi Colony sailed, as well as a city and a land in the Land Southward in the Land of Promise. Jerusalem was a city in Palestine as well as a city in the Land of Promise. Numerous other examples of duplicate naming can be found throughout the Book of Mormon. To place an entire concept, model, and theory based upon a single location of any name is foolhardy and contrary to scripture.


  1. Since we are dealing with MAPS, please try to include URL addresses to sites online where we might view the maps under discussion.

    Are there any of the maps describing the layout of the various time periods of civilizations on the Western Hemisphere detailing the distances and angles of direction of the seas and features without regard to archeological findings available online?

    What maps are available online or in printed materials which show the changes itemized in the period of destruction at the Crucification?

    How do those maps relate to the findings of undersea and possible locations of cities buried by whole mountains?
    -- Have any probably ancient highways or even paths been found which seem to lead into areas of major ancient land shifts which might cover large areas of habitation?
    -- Have any buried or sunken cities been found as archeological sites?

    What coastal and even inland changes might have occurred in these times and over these long periods, in such volcanic and tectonically active area which might have affected our notions of the geography involved (even considering some revision in the dating framework 'science' attempts to provide us)?
    -- It is interesting to note that many archeological sites have been found under the North Sea and the English Channel which may have been above the waters in this period if the dating systems currently in use were adjusted.

  2. In addition to my last post, please consider, how many other separate population pockets have existed on all parts of the Lands of Promise which could have been linked to other peoples brought to these places as diaspora of 'Israel' or even of diaspora of diaspora not yet revealed to our generation. The inklings of the magnitude of the Lord's relocation programs provided by Jacob Chapter 5 suggest that we are yet to learn of many such which will probably impact our assessments of His works among the children of men.