Mark Hofmann’s parole board letter released.

The handwritten letter by Mormon forger and bomber, Mark Hofmann, to his parole board in 1988 has finally been released.

For those not familiar with Hofmann and the great Salamander Letter controversy, here’s a synopsis:

Mark Hofmann fooled the prophets and leaders of his church in the 1980s when he began making a lucrative living by selling them forged (fake) documents that were damaging to Mormonism. These documents were purchased by the Mormon church and archived away (or destroyed) so that no one would ever see them.

(The fact that LDS prophets were so easily fooled by forgeries is telling, as well as the fact that the LDS leadership–thinking the documents were genuine–were willing to pay a lot of money to procure them from Hofmann to keep the world from seeing them. These two facts alone speak volumes about Mormonism . . . but I digress.)

Once Hofmann’s scam began to unravel he resorted to bombs. In the end, two people were killed and Hofmann was seriously injured when one of the bombs detonated prematurely.

For a more detailed examination of the incident, I highly recommend the book The Mormon Murders.  It is a riveting page-turner investigated and written by two secular (non-Mormon, non-Christian) authors.

Hofmann opened his letter to the Utah parole board with this amazing statement:

“These are some of my thoughts concerning my crimes and how I became what I am. As far back as I can remember I have liked to impress people through my deceptions. In fact, some of my earliest memories are of doing magic and card tricks. Fooling people gave me a sense of power and superiority. I believe this is what led to my forging activities.”

You can read the whole letter (in PDF format) here.

For those of you who have studied early Mormon history (pre-revisionism), I am certain that you find the same irony in this quote as I did: This quote could easily be ascribed to Mormonism’s founder, Joseph Smith, and it would be just as accurate and apropos.

It’s true that the fruit never falls far from the tree.

(FILE | The Salt Lake Tribune) Mark W. Hofmann, left, and LDS Church leaders N. Eldon Tanner, Spencer W. Kimball, Marion G. Romney, Boyd K. Packer and Gordon B. Hinckley examine the Anthon transcript April 22, 1980.

4 thoughts on “Mark Hofmann’s parole board letter released.

  1. Nice report. I love the letter :oD! Although I have to say, who cares!

    The Mormons were so taken in because they knew of the occult nature and other frauds of the church and they didn’t want it exposed. Jerald and Sandra Tanner actually exposed Hoffman’s stuff as forgeries but weren’t listened to by the LDS church because the Tanners have been their worst nightmare as far as exposing the LDS for what it is.

  2. For those of you who have studied early Mormon history (pre-revisionism), I am certain that you find the same irony in this quote as I did: This quote could easily be ascribed to Mormonism’s founder, Joseph Smith, and it would be just as accurate and apropos.

    Indeed. In fact, I just got done reading Fawn Brodie’s No Man Knows My History, and she quite concisely sums up the environment surrounding Joseph Smith’s novel:

    “Any theory of the origins of the Book of Mormon that spotlights the prophet and blacks out the stage on which he performed is certain to be a distortion. For the book can best be explained, not by Joseph’s ignorance nor by his delusions, but by his responsiveness to the provincial opinions of his time. He had neither the diligence nor the constancy to master reality. But his mind was open to all intellectual influences, from whatever province they might blow.” (Brodie, NMKMH, p.69)

  3. Eric says:

    “(The fact that LDS prophets were so easily fooled by forgeries is telling, as well as the fact that the LDS leadership–thinking the documents were genuine–were willing to pay a lot of money to procure them from Hofmann to keep the world from seeing them. These two facts alone speak volumes about Mormonism . . . but I digress.)”

    Except that those aren’t the facts at all… The LDS leaders expressed doubt about the authenticity of the documents, stating that they felt they had to defer to the “experts” who all declared them to be genuine. And far from keeping the world from seeing them, once acquired they PUBLISHED them for all to see.

  4. Howard says:

    Actually the fact that the church leaders didn’t immediately proclaim them as forgeries is all I need to know. Any uncertainty on their part shows that they were not really prophets. The LDS faith is a fantasy. There never have been any prophets. Not ever.

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