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Joseph Smith would put a stone in his hat and then the "translation" of the plates would appear on the stone.
Smiths wife, Emma related: "In writing for your father, I frequently wrote day after day, often sitting at the table close to him, he sitting with his face buried in his hat, with the stone in it, and dictating [the Book of Mormon] hour after hour with nothing between us." (as quoted in Creation of the Book of Mormon, by La Mar Petersen, p.25) The Smith familys involvement with the occult goes back a number of years before the Book of Mormon was "translated" and printed in 1830.
According to Justice Noble, Smith "was condemned" at that time. " and so Joseph took Leg Bail, an early slang expression meaning to escape from custody. What is obviously happening is that the justices are privately suggesting to this first offender to get out of town and dont come back, and in exchange they will not impose sentence Judge Nobles statement agrees precisely with an early account of this 1826 trial published just five years after the trial had taken place. Abram Willard Benton, a young medical doctor who lived in South Bainbridge at the time. Benton, like Justice Noble, mentions that Joseph had been involved in glass looking, and that he had been tried and condemned. Dr.
Benton adds that because Joseph was a minor at the time, being 20 years old, and thinking he might reform his conduct, he was designedly allowed to escape. Therefore, the court, though it found him guilty of being in violation of the law, had intentionally not imposed sentence as a way of showing mercy on this youthful offender." ("From Occult to Cult With Joseph Smith, Jr.," Joseph Smiths Bainbridge, N. Court Trials, p.123) Mormon historians are now conceding the reality of the Smith familys involvement with magic. Michael Quinns new edition of his book, Early Mormonism and the Magic World View he observes: "Friendly sources corroborate hostile non-Mormon accounts. Bushman has written: There had always been evidence of it ("money-digging in the Smith family") in the hostile affidavits from the Smiths neighbors, evidence which Mormons dismissed as hopelessly biased.
He came for Joseph on account of having heard that he posssessed certain means by which he could discern things invisible to the natural eye." (Biographical Sketches, Lucy Smith, pp.91-92, as quoted in Early Mormon Documents, Vol.Also, the fact that it was published through the instrumentality of Episcopal Bishop Daniel S. If this court record is authentic, it is the most damning evidence in existence against Joseph Smith. Says that he came from town of Palmyra, and had been at the house of Josiah Stowell in Bainbridge most of time since; had small part of time been employed in looking for mines, but the major part had been employed by said Stowell on his farm, and going to school; that he had a certain stone, which he had occasionally looked at to determine where hidden treasures in the bowels of the earth were; that he professed to tell in this manner where gold-mines were a distance under ground, and had looked for Mr.If any evidence had been in existence that Joseph Smith had used a seer stone for fraud and deception, and especially had he made this confession in a court of law as early as 1826, or four years before the Book of Mormon was printed, and this confession was in a court record, it would have been impossible for him to have organized the restored Church.... Bridgman, who informed that one Joseph Smith of Bainbridge was a disorderly person and an imposter. Stowell several times, and informed him where he could find those treasures, and Mr."As a young man Joseph Smith not only labored on his familys farm, but he also worked in blessing crops, finding lost articles, predicting future events or prophesying, and using divine rods and seer stones. "One of the most detailed accounts of Josephs use of a seer stone for purposes other than translation is recorded in a pre-trial examination by justice Albert Neely at Bainbridge, New York, in March 1826, where Joseph was charged with being a disorderly person and an imposter. LDS Church writers were extremely reluctant to recognize its authenticity, as it seems that such examinations before a justice of the peace were not usually recorded. Nibley, professor of history and religion at Brigham Young University, explained the seriousness of the alleged trial: You knew its immense value as a weapon against Joseph Smith if its authenticity could be established .