Ancient Transoceanic Travel
Transoceanic Travel to the New World
Science has long proclaimed that virtually all Native Americans came across the Bering Strait ice bridge about 15,000 years ago, then slowly made their way south.Although the Book of Mormon doesn't dispute the fact that some groups may have done so, it claims that several groups came to the New World by boat.
This has caused many scholars to scoff at the LDS...until now.
Several evidences are now showing forth, pushing the fact that at least some peoples came over by boat.
First off, is the tradition by virtually every ancient tribe, that their peoples came to this land by boat. Whether one looks at the legends of the Incans, Mayans, Olmecs, Iroquois, Cherokee, etc., they all claim coming over by boat. No tradition I'm aware of mentions coming over an ice bridge.
Second, an archaeological dig recently found in Chile has been dated at 20,000 years. It would be impossible for people to arrive in Chile so soon after walking over the Bering Strait. Current suggestions are that either peoples came over the strait earlier than previously thought (though the archaeological record does not show any peoples coming over earlier), or that other peoples settled-perhaps by boat.
Several scholars are now strongly considering the boat crossing theory. For example, Cyrus Gordon, the reknowned scholar, has praised the LDS scholars Martin Raish and John Sorenson for their work on transoceanic contacts ("Pre-Columbian Contacts with the Americas across the Oceans:An Annotated Bibliography")
So, once again, as archaeological research advances, the Book of Mormon stance becomes stronger.