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Spaulding, Solomon, 1761-1816



  • Existence: 1761 - 1816

Biographical History

Solomon Spaulding (1761-1816) was a Revolutionary War veteran and graduate of Dartmouth College who served the majority of his life as a minister in Windham, CT and store-owner in locations ranging from New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. He also was the author of "Manuscript, Found," a book which some claim to be the inspiration of "The Book of Mormon."

Solomon Spaulding was born on February 20, 1761 in Ashford, Connecticut. As he grew up, he served as a member of the Continental Army in the American Revolution. After the war concluded, he then entered Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH between 1782-1785. After graduating, he served as a Congregationalist preacher in Windham, CT starting in 1787.

In 1795, Spaulding left the ministry, married Matilda Sabin, and opened a store withn his brother Josiah in Cherry Valley, NY. In 1799, he then moved the store to Richfield and later relocated to Conneaut, OH. While living in Ohio, he began writing the book "Manuscript, Found," a historical romance about a lost civilization of Greeks who found themselves and established their society in America. Although more based on Greek epics, rumors escalated that this unpublished book was the basis to Joseph Smith's "The Book of Mormon."

Eventually due to the War of 1812, Spaulding eventually moved his family east to Pennsylvania. After four years of living there, he eventually passed away on October 20, 1816.

Wikipedia, May 16, 2017 (b. Feb. 20, 1761; d. Oct. 20, 1816; served as Revolutionary War vet, minister, and store-owner; author of "Manuscript, Found," a work which some claim to be the basis of "The Book of Mormon.")

Found in 4 Collections and/or Records:

Dale W. Adams research collection on Mormons in Ohio

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 2376
Scope and Contents

The contents of this collection represent the research notes of Dale Adams regarding several important events in the early history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In many cases, photocopies of original sources are included in the collection. The main focus of the collection is the Ohio period of LDS history, with particular attention being paid to Solomon Spaulding (or Spalding) and D. Philastus Hurbut (or Hurlburt).

Dates: 1968-2001

One hundred similarities between the Book of Mormon and the Spaulding Manuscript

 File — Folder 1: [Barcode: 31197230316256]
Identifier: MSS SC 1825
Scope and Contents

Typed carbon copy. Bown argues that Joseph Smith was, as the author of the Book of Mormon, heavily influenced by Spaulding's manuscript.

Dates: circa 1940

The origin of Mormonism and reminiscences of the Mormons in Illinois

 File — Folder 1: [Barcode: 31197230233634]
Identifier: MSS SC 89
Scope and Contents Prepared typescript of a series of ten articles written by J.H. Sherman which appeared in the Ithaca Daily Journal during April and May, 1886. The articles, decidedly anti-Mormon, tell of Joseph Smith's early life, the Solomon Spaulding manuscript from which Smith supposedly got the idea for the Book of Mormon, the organization of the Latter-day Saint Church, the settlement of the Mormons in Nauvoo, Illinois, death of Joseph Smith, mob violence in Illinois, expulsion of the Mormons from...
Dates: 1886

The Spalding Manuscript and the Greek and Roman Classics

 Collection — Folder 1: [Barcode: 31197232564366]
Identifier: MSS 8991
Scope and Contents Contains a typed copy of "The Spalding Manuscript and the Greek and Roman Classics" written by Dale W. Adams from Park City, Utah. The material discusses the connections between Solomon Spalding's manuscript of the Roman discovery of the Americas with Homeric epics including "The Iliad" and "The Odyssey" while also discrediting claims made by critics of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints concerning Joseph Smith plagiarizing this manuscript when writing "The Book of Mormon"....
Dates: 2017 February 23