Indian and Japanese influences
Dr. Einar C. Erickson was born in 1928 in Ruth, Nevada, seven miles west of Ely, Nevada. While living there he won a Boy Scout scholarship in Archaeology and Geology with headquarters in Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado. He spent time with Navajo and Hopi that made an impact on his life and stimulated lifetime interest and service activities involving Indian Groups. Later as an experienced pilot he did volunteer work for the Navajo Tribal Museum, locating Pueblo III sites and cliff dwellings from the air and then verifying them by ground trips. Four times president of the Young Men in various Wards of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, he involved his young men in many of these field trips giving them valuable experiences. He also became involved with Shoshone and Paiutes, and became familiar with their languages and customs and ceremonies on a personal basis with all four of these cultures, which continues to the present. He enlisted in the Armed Services near the end of WWII and later while in occupied Japan, he was set apart to help open the Japanese Mission incurring many spiritual experiences and additional interest in Oriental cultures. He was to return to Japan and spend time in China in research for some of his tapes.
In 1952, Einar married Georgia Gudmundson, his younger sister's best friend. They have five children, 28 grandchildren and 30 great grandchildren. Many of his grandchildren have been taught by him. All of his children have college educations. His two oldest sons have participated in many of the presentations of the ancient documents which parallel Mormon Doctrine and have done several tapes of their own. His oldest son is Dr. Ranel E. Erickson, who received his Ph.D. from Stanford University. His next son, Ty B. Erickson, M.D. graduated from the University of Nevada School of Medicine and received his OB/GYN specialty training from the University of Colorado. His two daughters, LaStar Erickson Richins and Shara Erickson Forbush, graduated in Elementary Ed and Medical Assistant, respectively. His youngest son, Renvic Erickson, graduated in Secondary Ed in Geography. Dr. Lynn H. Erickson, a brother of Einar,(who passed away in early 2014) was involved in ancient discovery research and authored a number of tapes.
Through the G.I. Bill Dr Erickson acquired his Bachelors and Masters degrees from BYU in Chemistry and Geology, briefly interrupted during the Korean War with a recall back to active duty. He attended the University of Arizona for several years, on two different occasions, and became a Teaching Assistant in Geochemistry to Dr. Paul Damon, and studied mining engineering under several famous Mining Engineers and Authors. He received his Ph.D. in A.S. Near Eastern Studies from George Wythe College. He worked for years as an Exploration Geologist. He is a Registered Professional Engineer, and was formerly registered in Canada where he worked for many companies. He has a Drilling Contractors license and is a qualified engineer for many contractors' licenses in Nevada. He continues today as a Consultant Geologist.
How Einar became interested in Ancient documents
In 1951, while studying Archaeology under Dr. W. Jackson at BYU, he attended a Symposium on the Near East, where he heard a presentation by Dr. Bruce Warren, recently dean of Anthropology at BYU, referring to the very first publication, The Manual of Discipline, by Dr. Brownlee of the Dead Sea Scrolls. It was immediately evident that there were parallels to important Mormon Doctrine in that first available text. Einar joined the American Schools of Oriental Research, and several other Near Eastern Societies acquiring the publications that began to come out on the Dead Sea Scrolls. By 1954, there was sufficient data to permit presentations on the Dead Sea Scrolls and popular requests kept him busy presenting two or more Dead Sea Scroll talks each month. About the same time the first of the Nag Hammadi publications began to be available. Einar became interested in all of the ancient discoveries that were being made that provided evidence of the restoration. Slowly he accrued publications on more than 110 different ancient document discoveries, many of them from visits he made to such places as Russia, China, and Armenia. His 24,000 volume personal library permits him to do all his research without having to go to any other source. Now many of his sources are out of print and his library has become of singular importance.
His presentations on the Dead Sea Scrolls began to include the Nag Hammadi as well as others during the 1970s. His first tapes were some of his presentations while in Tucson, Arizona, which led to a program with the Seventy's in the Simi Valley Stake, California. These two taping programs, entirely non-profit, became a service to the full-time missionary program and resulted in more than 80 tapes of one to four hours each dealing with Ancient Documents that Confirm the Restoration. These were well received throughout the world. President S. Delworth Young, and later Mark E. Peterson monitored these tapes and provided guidance. Taping of specific materials ended with: Fate of the Dead, and Jesus in the Nag Hammadi. Most of the tapes have been reformatted in MP3 format. George Wythe College in Cedar City has two complete sets of his CDs. The Hurricane, Utah and St. George, Utah libraries both have sets of his CDs. The MP3 can also be purchased for personal ownership.
Einar took seriously the statement in Alma 29:8 "... the Lord doth grant unto all nations of their own nation and tongue to teach his work, yea, in wisdom, all that he seeth fit that they should have." Concluding that there was something of the Gospel in every nation, he searched for that evidence in every Nation that he had the opportunity to visit or work in, and gleaned much important data that he incorporated into many tapes that reflected the results of this research.
Einar was an accomplished bush pilot. Flying was a necessity for him wherever he worked. He was a Registered Professional Engineer in Canada as well as in Nevada, and made frequent use of airplanes to get to distant and remote sites where he was doing consulting work, landing on remote lakes, beaches and sea harbors, in Canada and the western United States as well as Central American areas. He wore out nine airplanes, and logged more than 13,500 hours of flying time, often taking off and landing several times a day on remote dirt strips, some one way, some at nearly 9,000 feet. He utilized old roads, sandy ares, fields, and any place he could safely land. His airplanes were equipped with special Stoll Kits permitting him short field take offs and landings. He had many narrow escapes; he survived three crash landings mostly due to mechanical failures, without any harm, and has recounted many of his miraculous episodes and experiences in the lecture The Angel Rafael. He flew to many of the places that he gave his talks and where many of them were taped. In 1982, he became blind in his left eye and during a year of preparation, it was finally operated on. Then his site failed in his right eye, but within two years and with some operations, he could see well enough to fly again, but he had sold his last planes, and after 1984 never returned to flying again.
At the age of sixteen, he won a scholarship in archaeology and geology, headquartered in Mancos, Colorado, with excursions into the ruins of the Mesa Verde, Navajo Country, Canyon de Chelly, the canyons around Navajo Monument, and Keyanta where he stayed at the trading post with the wife of John Wetherill, one of the Wetherill brothers who had found the major ruins of Mesa Verde. He met Ben Wetherill who had surveyed much of the Muddy River sites about 1930. From them he learned of John's last interests around Navajo Mt. When he attended BYU under the GI Bill, he accumulated many hours of archaeology credits, but took his degrees in chemistry and geology. As an Associate to the Department of Archaeology at BYU during the time of Drs. Jakman and Christensen, he participated in some 21 excursions into the southwest, including Beef Basin, Grand Gulch, East Fork of the Virgin River, reporting on these at various conferences. During the 1970's he did aerial surveys on behalf of the Navajo Tribal Museum, and reported on this at the 1972 Pecos Conference. He became quite interested in the possibilities of extensive Anasazi sites north of the Grand Canyon, and he and his brother Lynn, nephew Lyf, and grandson Renaun, volunteered to search for sites in the Kaibab Forest north of the Grand Canyon. The team finalized this volunteer activity in 2004 after having located more than 1700 sites, for which they provided many reports, including some in the Saddle Mt. Wilderness and the Kanab Wilderness. They received the National Volunteer of the Year ward and the ‘Kaibab Forest Award' in 2000. In 1977, they volunteered their efforts in the Dixie National Forest, and the Bureau of Land Mangement areas of the Arizona Strip and Beaver Utah District of Southwestern Utah, in an effort to establish sources of obsidian found in the Southwest, and the trade lanes through which the obsidian was transmitted. They processed field data on over 65 villages and sites found along the Beaver Dam and Virgin River from Utah Hill, to Lake Mead. But the main emphasis was on volcanic and igneous sources of obsidian. Some 115 volcanoes and sources have been found, in south west Utah and southeastern Nevada, with a new one in the summer of 2005, most of these occurrences are not known and do not appear in the literature of the region. This effort will be assemble in at least ten reports hoping to benefit archaeologists seeking to find the sources of obsidian found on numerous sites. They take seriously the outline of migrations from Central America into the Americas found in the 63 Chapter of Alma.
Because of the association of his wife with the Heritage Choir for many years, he also assisted in tours to Israel, Yucatan, and elsewhere, a highlight being able to collect obsidian from 15 volcanic sources in Armenia in conjunction with his Near Eastern Studies when the Choir took a humanitarian trip and presentation at Yerevan in Armenia.
Such activities has provided the substance of his teaching activities. He has taught geology at BYU, and off campus courses on religion for BYU. He has taught off campus courses in Geology and Anthropology for the University of Nevada, Reno, where his students found many ancient sites in Nevada areas. He followed up on these discoveries to provide records and artifact analyses. He taught off campus and Elderhostel programs of Geology and Archaeology for the University of Southern Utah at Cedar City for several years, and for more than 10 years he taught Astronomy, Archaeology and Geology for the off campus and Elderhostel Programs of Dixie College in St. George, Utah. He has been the tour guide for groups from Dixie College Programs to archaeological Sites in Peru, and several to the Yucatan. He was a Teaching Assistant in Geochemistry at the University of Arizona in 1961-1962, and in 1995 lectured for George Wythe College, then teaching Astronomy, Geology and Archaeology. Later, he obtained a Ph.D. from George Wythe in 1999 and was a Professor of Science, teaching the same subjects.
He served on two different Stake High Councils, as a High Priest Group Leader, a member of the presidency of the 221st Quorum of Seventy until they changed the Seventies program. He also served as a financial clerk, Young Mens President and High Priest Group leadership. While engaged in some of these various callings he taught the Gospel Doctrine Class for 44 years. He truly believes that the more knowledge you obtain in this life the greater the advantage in the life to come.