It was on September 21, 1823, when the angel Moroni first appeared to the young prophet Joseph Smith in his farm home near Palmyra, New York.
As we remember it today, we declare our solemn testimony to all mankind that, indeed, Moroni did come! It is a fact, a firm and unshakable truth.Moroni came! — Mark E. Petersen, “The Angel Moroni Came!” General Conference, October 1983
Elder Orson Hyde, speaking at the same celebration as President Young, made perhaps the most intriguing reference to this theme, connecting Columbus’ voyage and discoveries with the ministry of Moroni, the ancient American prophet and divine messenger and caretaker of the records of the Book of Mormon. Referring to him as the “Prince of America,” Elder Hyde noted that Moroni “presides over the destinies of America, and feels a lively interest in all our doings. . . . This same angel was with Columbus and gave him deep impressions, by dreams and by visions, respecting this New World.” He continued, “The angel of God helped him – was with him on the stormy deep, calmed the troubled elements, and guided his frail vessel to the desired haven.” — — Journal of Discourses 6:368