Salamander: The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders

by Linda Sillitoe

Other authorsAllen D. Roberts (Author)
Hardcover, 1988




Salt Lake City, Utah : Signature Books, 1988.


 Drawing from thousands of pages of police reports, court documents, interviews, letters, and diaries, Sillitoe's and Roberts's narrative cuts through the complexities of this famous crime investigation to deliver a gripping, Capote-esque tale. They embrace the details but lay them out systematically as seen through the eyes of the detectives, victims, and the perpetrator. The darkest secrets unravel gradually--allowing the reader fleeting glimpses of the infamous white salamander as it ducks in and out of its fabricator's head. What was the "salamander letter" and why were so many people determined to possess--and to conceal--it? Why was this one of the most unusual cases in American forensic history? A skilled con artist by anyone's assessment, Mark Hofmann eluded exposure by police and document authenticators--the FBI, Library of Congress, the LDS historical department, and polygraph experts--until George Throckmorton discovered the telltale microscopic alligatoring that was characteristic of the forgeries. What ensued was a suspense-ridden cat-and-mouse game between seasoned prosecutors and a clever, homicidal criminal. In the end, this story only verifies that some facts are indeed stranger than fiction.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member vibrantminds
The story behind Mark Hoffman's Mormon forgeries and murders that he committed. An intriguing true story of how deception and fraud led to eventual murder. He had a talent that surpassed even the experts in his forgery skills, a technique that he had perfected and none could detect the fraud. He had all the appearances of an outstanding citizen in the community, attended church regularly, and was a devoted husband and father. Underneath it all lied a very different man who was callous and cold and was proud of his fraudulent skills and showed little remorse for the murders he committed.… (more)
LibraryThing member KR_Patterson
I usually like these types of stories but I found this one a little dry and there were lots of names to memorize. But interesting overall.



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