On September 10, 2004 I asked the Smithsonian Institute what their view is of the Book of Mormon. I had been told by numerous Mormons that this institution had archaeological proof of the evidence of the claims by Joseph Smith. This is the response I received:
“The Smithsonian considers the Book of Mormon a religious document and not a scientific guide. The Smithsonian Institution has never used it in archaeological research and has found no archaeological evidence to support its claims.”
“Latter-day Saints love ancient religious records. We have dozens of them in the Bible under such names as Genesis, Judges, Ruth, Isaiah, and John. Through the Prophet Joseph Smith a great number of other ancient records were restored-the books of Nephi, Alma, Mormon, and Moroni in the Book of Mormon, as well as Abraham and selections from the book of Moses in the Pearl of Great Price.” Donald W. Parry and Dana M. Pike, LDS Perspectives on the Dead Sea Scrolls. Provo: Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, 1997.