Either Joseph Smith was the most talented author of all time, or he was simply translating an ancient record.
Despite how strange it is, one thing should be clear: the method of burying your face in a hat is actually amazing evidence for the Book of Mormon!
This hemispheric, open, liberal and generic use of the term "Lamanite" can help explain many concerns and misunderstandings people may have about the Lamanites.
All of these add plausibility to the historicity of the Book of Mormon with knowledge that wasn’t accessible in Joseph’s day.
President Howard W. Hunter made an interesting statement related to Book of Mormon geography quoted in a Deseret News article in 1995