I found a great article in an old 2007 New Era. It took historic accounts of people who had interacted with the gold plates and used those accounts to offer a comprehensive description. With that article as a source, I have built this handout which should work great for any church class.

There is a visual preview below, but you can download the full high-quality pdf here.


An interesting point to bring up to those your are teaching…

The article points out that some accounts don’t match perfectly. And that’s good news.

“In court, testimonies that vary slightly from each other are often seen as more truthful than when they match precisely. If all the statements are exactly the same, it can indicate that the witnesses have compared notes to fabricate a story that is too perfect.

The length of eight inches is given in all of these statements. Three give a width of seven inches. Memory of things like dimensions should be regarded as approximate and should not be assumed as exact. What is evident is that the page size was only slightly longer than it was wide.” New Era Article, “What Did the Golden Plates Look like?”

It’s the “golden plates” not the “gold plates”

Well, you can call it by either name. The point is that the plates may or may not be made of gold. Based on comments from Joseph Smith and David Whitmer, we do know that they at least had a golden color. Despite that, they could still be made from a different metal.

Anything else?

If there is anything else we can learn from these descriptions, let us all know in the comments section. thanks!