On a summer day in 1828, Book of Mormon scribe and witness Martin Harris was emptying drawers, upending furniture, and ripping apart mattresses as he desperately looked for a stack of papers he had sworn to God to protect. Those pages containing the only copy of the first three months of the Joseph Smith’s translation of the golden plates were forever lost, and the detailed stories they held forgotten over the ensuing years—until now.
In this highly anticipated work, author Don Bradleypresents over a decade of historical and scriptural research to not only tell the story of the lost pages but to reconstruct many of the detailed stories written on them. Questions explored and answered include:
Was the lost manuscript actually 116 pages?
How did Mormon’s abridgment of this period differ from the accounts in Nephi’s small plates?
Where did the brass plates and Laban’s sword come from?
How did Lehi’s family and their descendants live the Law of Moses without the temple and Aaronic priesthood?
How did the Liahona operate?
Why is Joseph of Egypt emphasized so much in the Book of Mormon?
How were the first Nephites similar to the very last?
What message did God write on the temple wall for Aminadi to translate?
How did the Jaredite interpreters come into the hands of the Nephite kings?
Why was King Benjamin so beloved by his people?
Despite the likely demise of those pages to the sands of time, the answers to these questions and many more are now available for the first time in nearly two centuries in The Lost 116 Pages: Reconstructing the Book of Mormon’s Missing Stories.
Praise for The Lost 116 Pages:
“Don Bradley’s ability to see connections the rest of us miss is the stuff of legend. What he has assembled in this study is among the most audacious attempts to make sense of the Book of Mormon yet seen. This is a book that rewards reading, re-reading, and re-re-reading.” — Joseph M. Spencer, author of The Vision of All: Twenty-five Lectures on Isaiah in Nephi’s Record
“Extraordinary. Sparkling with fresh and important insights into the history, nature, and contents of the lost portion of the Book of Mormon—and of the portion that we still have.” — Daniel C. Peterson, editor, Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship
About the Author:
Don Bradley is an author and independent historian specializing in the beginnings of the Latter-day Saint Restoration. He completed a Bachelor’s in History at BYU and a Master’s in History at Utah State University, where he wrote his thesis on “American Proto-Zionism and the ‘Book of Lehi’: Recontextualizing the Rise of Mormonism.” Don has performed an internship with the Joseph Smith Papers Project working with the earliest Joseph Smith sources. He was the primary researcher for Brian C. Hales's Joseph Smith’s Polygamyseries. He has published on the translation of the Book of Mormon, plural marriage before Nauvoo, Joseph Smith’s “grand fundamental principles of Mormonism,” and the Kinderhook plates, and has forthcoming works on the Kinderhook plates and the First Vision. He lives in Springville, Utah.