The Book of Mormon states that the Nephites and Jaredites had horses. If they did, why did the Native Americans (Lamanites) not know about horses when the explorers came to the new world? Do you know if there is any archaeological evidence that there were horses on the American Continent when the Jaredites and Nephites were around? Thanks, Gidgt.
It is not true that the Lamanites knew nothing of the horse when the Spaniards arrived. It is true that the Spaniards found no horses in Mexico, Central America and Peru, and from that deduced that there were no horses on the American Continent. However, Sir Francis Drake, visiting the west coast of North America, saw "large bands of wild horses," as quoted below:
"So far as the nonexistence of the horse in ancient America is concerned, the question has forever been set at rest by the discovery of the remains of this animal all over the land; and though Cortez and his followers saw none alive, yet Admiral Sir Francis Drake did see large bands of wild horses on the Oregon Coast in 1579, far too early for any to have escaped from the Spaniards, grown wild, and traveled so vast a distance."
(Reynolds and Sjodahl, Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 6, p. 236.)
There has been work performed at Gypsum Cave and other locations "where mammoth, mastodon, camel and horse are associated with man, and there is a map showing twenty-three places where extinct animals have been associated with man in the United States."
(M.R. Harrington, Gypsum Cave, Nevada, Southwest Museum papers, No. 8, 37.)
I have observed the skeletons of pre-historic horses in a museum of natural history in Buenos Aires, Argentina, that were discovered in Argentina by Charles Darwin (1809-1882). I could tell no difference from the skeletons of modern horses except in one particular. The bone extending over the nose of the modern horse is about four inches long after it separates from the rest of the skull; however, on those pre-historic horses that bone was about ten inches long.
Evidence shows that the horse was native to the American continent before the advent of the Book of Mormon cultures, rather than being introduced by Europeans in the 1500's.