Tag Archives: Joseph Smith

“Journey” Teaser Series: Who is the “Yankee Mahomet”?

For a full answer to this and other questions, see Journey into America: The Challenge of Islam

The “Yankee Mahomet”, according to 19th century American commentators, referring to the Prophet Muhammed, was none other than Joseph Smith, the Prophet of the Mormon faith.

When Joseph Smith declared his faith, many people took notice. As early as 1842, the New York Herald editorialized that Joseph Smith “indicates as much talent, originality, and moral courage as Mahomet, Odin, or any of the great spirits that have hitherto produced the revolutions of the past ages”. From its birth, the founder of the Mormon Church was compared to the Prophet of Islam—approvingly by Mormons and dismissively by their critics. The American public began calling him “Yankee Mahomet” and  or “backwoods Mahomet.”

Many, many comparisons can be made between the Muslim and Mormon communities. We explore this fully in the book, with an entire chapter devoted to Mormons and Muslims—a fascinating and important comparison.

Order Journey into America: The Challenge of Islam.

Next: Why did the State Department ban The Selected Works of Thomas Jefferson?

The roots of the LDS: Palmyra, NY

One of the most rewarding aspects of this journey includes the friendships you gain on the course of your travels. One really good friend I made on this journey was a young woman with the name of Holly Tuttle in Palmyra, New York. Holly’s friendship is unique to me because she introduced me to a whole new aspect of American life that I did not know much about. She let me and my journey-family into her life by opening the doors of the Mormon faith to us. She not only invited us to learn about her faith but also agreed to show us the sacred sites in Palmyra, New York and Salt Lake City, Utah that serves as the foundation the Church of Latter-Day Saints.  

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