Book Review: “Iron Age America”

One of the criteria for finding Book of Mormon lands is an abundance of iron. If you read any book of Church history, occasionally you would hear about Father Bosley who lived near Palmyra in Avon, and he found mass amounts of iron as mentioned in the Life of Heber C. Kimball. It reads “he found and plowed up axes and irons, and had sufficient to make his mill irons, and had always abundance of iron on hand without purchasing.”

If you see one of the episodes of Hidden in the Heartland, we feature William Connor. I heard about this guy from Rod Meldrum and made an appointment for Stephanie and I to visit with him in his house just outside of Columbus, Ohio. Connor is amongst a growing number of people who feel the whole concept of the natives living in America were dumb savages until Columbus brought modern civility, is not necessarily the full truth.

Many books written about this subject are usually filled with historical research from the author. What is cool about Connors book is it is based on the actual things he found himself, or something he was part of.

Most of his book is focused on his time he spent with Arlington Mallery, a retired captain in the US Navy who had a hobby of examining old maps. It is also Connors mission to carry on the research of iron furnaces being found in Ohio left from the work done by Mallery.

According to the book, between Mallery and Connor they have found 33 sites where there are iron furnaces left over anciently. The evidence of these comes with the green colored pieces of rock or glaze found near by. They would then dig around and find the burnt left-overs of an iron furnace. They would find either a piece of iron, or a cast used to make iron tools.

Connors best discovery is a mold with the iron casting still inside. This artifact now sits in Wayne May’s mini-museum inside the Latter-day Harvest book store in Palmyra, New York. Connor was lucky enough to get the same opinion on the artifact from a metallurgist at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. But Connor writes that most university professionals refuse to take a look at his research or will not take the time to drive out to the locations Connor has dug….a continuing problem in this research.

I highly suggest getting this book. You can find this book at the FIRM Foundation website or Amazon.

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