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“A recent electronic and chemical analysis of a metal [Kinderhook] plate … brought in 1843 to the Prophet Joseph Smith … appears to solve a previously unanswered question in Church history, helping to further evidence that the plate is what its producers later said it was – a nineteenth-century attempt to lure Joseph Smith into making a translation of ancient-looking characters that had been etched into the plates … As a result of these tests, we concluded that the plate … is not of ancient origin … the plate was etched with acid; and as Paul Cheesman and other scholars have pointed out, ancient inhabitants would probably have engraved the plates rather than etched them with acid. Secondly, we concluded that the plate was made from a true brass alloy (copper and zinc) typical of the mid-nineteenth century: whereas the brass of ancient times was actually bronze, an alloy of copper and tin.”

Stanley P. Kimball/Mormon scholar, The Ensign, (Salt Lake City, UT: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, August 1981), 66-70.