This is a excerpt from an article published in the Millenial Star – https://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/digital/collection/MStar/id/27175
The excerpt is part of a missionary report from Elders Orson Pratt and Joseph F. Smith in 1878. It includes their interview of David Whitmer, now 73 years of age. Below is what David says about his encounter with a person on his way to Cumorah. The translation of the Book of Mormon was still in progress and David Whitmer had never before heard of Cumorah and was only newly acquainted with Joseph Smith. This encounter took someplace between Harmony, Pennsylvania and Fayette, New York.
Before I knew Joseph, I had heard about him and the plates from persons who declared they knew he had them, and swore they would get them from him. When Oliver Cowdery went to Pennsylvania, he promised to write me what he should learn about these matters, which he did. He wrote me that Joseph had told him his (Oliver’s) secret thought, and all he had meditated about going to see him, which no man on earth knew, as he supposed, but himself, and so he stopped to write for Joseph.
Soon after this, Joseph sent for me (D. W.) to come to Harmony to get him and Oliver and bring them to my father’s house. I did not know what to do, I was pressed with my work. I had some 20 acres to plow, so I concluded I would finish plowing and then go. I got up one morning to go to work as usual, and on going to the field, found between five and seven acres of my ground had been plowed during the night.
I don’t know who did it; but it was done just as I would have done it myself, and the plow was left standing in the furrow.
This enabled me to start sooner. When I arrived at Harmony Joseph and Oliver were coming toward me, and met me some distance from the house. Oliver told me that Joseph had informed him when I started from home, where I had stopped the first night, how I read the sign at the tavern, where I stopped the next night, etc., and that I would be there that day before dinner, and this was why they had come out to meet me; all of which was exactly as Joseph had told Oliver, at which I was greatly astonished. When I was returning to Fayette, with Joseph and Oliver, all of us riding in the wagon, Oliver and I on an oldfashined wooden spring seat and Joseph behind us; while traveling along in a clear open place, a very pleasant, nice-looking old man suddenly appeared by the side of our wagon and saluted us with, “good morning, it is very warm,” at the same time wiping his face or forehead with his hand. We returned the salutation, and, by a sign from Joseph, I invited him to ride if he was going our way. But he said very pleasantly, “No, I am going to Cumorah.” This name was something new to me, I did not know what Cumorah meant. We all gazed at him and at each other, and as I looked around enquiringly of Joseph, the old man instantly disappeared, so that I did not see him again.The words of David Whitmer at age 73.