Bill Moore, Wayne Cowdrey and Arthur Vanick: Who Really Wrote the Book of Mormon?

Richard Senate had to postpone his appearance until next week, and I’m out of town, so here is a long-promised “lost” interview (from almost exactly six years ago) featuring Bill Moore and his co-authors discussing their 2005 book Who Really Wrote the Book of Mormon?: The Spalding Enigma. Cowdrey is actually a descendant of one of the founders of the Mormon Church, and the book was a expanded edition of a 1977 book by Vanick and Cowdrey.

Based on years of research (which was occasionally thwarted by persons unknown) the authors believe that the creation myth of the Mormon Church was based largely on an 1812 book called A Manuscript Found by an American Revolutionary War veteran named Solomon Spalding. They contend that church co-founder Sidney Rigdon borrowed or stole the manuscript from a printer in Pittsburgh after Spalding’s death. It contained the basic story of what Joseph Smith later claimed to have channeled for the Book Of Mormon.

In the book, the authors claim that they are not out to gut the Mormon Church; they were only interested in getting to the bottom of a story that had almost been forgotten, and found literally reams of documentary evidence to support it. Cowdrey himself says in the interview, “We care for the Mormon people, but we think that they’re living under a delusion.”

P.S. Bill Moore is not actually listed as an author, and he explained in the program that this was because he acted as editor and research associate. WARNING: UFOs were not mentioned in this program!

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