The Yucatan Penisula

 

It has been suggested that the Yucatan Peninsula was the land northward and that at some time in the past the sea extended farther inland creating a neck between the peninsula and the mainland of Central America.  This would create the correct north-south alignment as described in the Book of Mormon and Yucatan definitely has a great deal of favorable archeology to recommend it.  However, there are a number of problems related to this proposal.

 

1.  First, there is no evidence that there ever was a "narrow neck" at the base of Yucatan.  A theory which requires a change in geography is suspect and should be regarded with caution.

 

2.  There are seas as required by the text, however, there does not seem to be a place where the "sea divides the land".

 

3.  Third, the Yucatan Penisula would be a very limited "land northward" and would not have contained the tremendous Nephite emigration that the book describes.  Even more important it would not have been large enough to house the Jaredite population which inhabited the land northward and which far surpassed the Nephite/Lamanite group in size.  Also, there are few if any of the older Olmec era sites located on the penisula, most of the ruins being from the classical Maya period.

 

4.  Fourth, there is no evidence of the geological changes described in the text for the land northward, which took place at the time of the crucifixion.