"The Book of Mormon is a volume of holy scripture comparable to the Bible. It is a record of God's dealings with the ancient inhabitants of the Americas, and it contains, as does the Bible, the fulness of the everlasting gospel." (See Introduction to the Book of Mormon.)
Listed here chronologically are some of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas. (The superscript number after names, such as Jared2, distinguishes between persons or groups with the same name. See name entries with superscript numbers in Book of Mormon, Index.)Jaredites - Descendants of Jared2 (who prayed that the Lord would not confound the language of his people at the time of the Tower of Babel) and of his brother and friends. Under guidance from the Lord, the Jaredite colony crossed the ocean in barges to the promised land. The colony became a great nation, but the wickedness of the people finally resulted in their destruction by wars and contentions. The people of Zarahemla (Mulekites) found the last surviving Jaredite, Coriantumr2, and obtained his partial history from a stone. The more complete Jaredite history was discovered later and abridged in the book of Ether. (Ether 1:15) c. 2200 B.C. to c. 580 B.C.
Mulekites - A name not found in the Book of Mormon but often used to denote the followers of Mulek, son of King Zedekiah, who escaped from Jerusalem to the promised land about the time Lehi1 left with his followers. The Mulekites (people of Zarahemla) were eventually discovered by the Nephites who, led by King Mosiah2, had fled from the Lamanites about 120 B.C.. The Mulekites then became part of the Nephite nation. (Mosiah 25:2, 13.) c. 587 B.C. to c. 270 B.C.
Nephites - Descendants of Nephi1 and his followers. After fleeing from the impending destruction of Jerusalem, crossing the ocean and arriving in the promised land, the families of Lehi1 and Ishmael1 split into two factions, the righteous led by Nephi1 and the wicked by Laman1. (2 Ne. 5:9.) The division existed except for a period from about A.D. 70-231, during which time the people were united. (4 Ne. 1:17.) Later, any person who accepted the gospel was considered to be a Nephite. (4 Ne. 1:36.) c. 588 B.C. to c. A.D. 421.
Lamanites - Descendants of Laman1 and his followers (2 Ne. 5:14), known by that name until c. A.D. 70 to c. A.D. 231, during which time the people were united. Later, any person who rejected the gospel was numbered among the Lamanites. (4 Ne. 1:38.) From c. 588 B.C. on.
Jacobites, Josephites, Zoramites1, Lemuelites, Ishmaelites - Descendants of other members of Lehi's followers. Generally, they are not distinguished by those names, but rather by the broad classifications Nephites and Lamanites. (Jac. 1:13-14.) c. 588 B.C.
Order of Nehors - Those who followed Nehor2, the Nephite apostate. (Alma 1, 14.) c. 91 B.C. to c. 81 B.C.
Anti-Nephi-Lehies - Lamanites converted to the gospel by the sons of Mosiah2. (Alma 23:5-18.) Thereafter they refused to take up arms against the Lamanites. (Alma 25:6, 12-19.) They suffered at the hands of the Lamanites but were protected by the Nephites. (Alma 24:20-27; 27:21-25.) Also known as Ammonites or the people of Ammon2. c. 90 B.C. to c. 43 B.C.
Amalekites - Nephite apostates, who followed the order of Nehors. (Alma 21:2-4.) They stirred up the Lamanites against the Anti-Nephi-Lehies. (Alma 24:1.) c. 90 B.C. to c. 74 B.C.
Amulonites - Descendants and followers of Amulon and the priests of wicked King Noah3. (Alma 25:3-5.) They stirred up the Lamanites against the Nephites (Alma 24:1), took up arms against the Anti-Nephi-Lehies (Alma 24:2), and slew the believers of Christ. (Alma 24:28.) They usurped the Lamanite leadership and persecuted the Lamanites. (Alma 25:5.) They were eventually slain by the Nephites and Lamanites. (Alma 25:4, 8.) c. 90 to c. 77 B.C.
Amlicites - Followers of Amlici. (Alma 2:11.) They were a Nephite faction desiring a king. (Alma 2:9.) They united with the Lamanites, but the combined forces were defeated by the Nephites. (Alma 2:24-35.) c. 87 B.C.
Ammonihahites - Inhabitants of the city of Ammonihah. They burned the scriptures, killed the believers of Christ (Alma 14:8), and imprisoned Alma2 and Amulek. (Alma 14:22.) They were eventually destroyed by the Lamanites. (Alma 16:2-3, 9.) c. 82 B.C. to c. 78 B.C.
Zoramites2 - Apostate sect of Nephites and followers of Zoram3. (Alma 30:59.) They believed falsely that they were the elect and worshiped with set prayers. (Alma 31:12-23.) Alma led a mission to reclaim them but had success only among the poorer segment of the people. (Alma 32:2-6.) They eventually united with the Lamanites. (Alma 48:5.) c. 74 B.C. to c. A.D. 3-9.
Amalickiahites - Followers of Amalickiah. They refused to enter into the covenant of Moroni1 to follow the cause of freedom. (Alma 46:28.) Some were put to death because of their refusal. (Alma 46:35.) Others fled with Amalakiah into the wilderness and united with the Lamanites. (Alma 46:28-33.) c. 72 B.C.
King-men - Those who desired to alter the Nephite law to establish a king over the land. (Alma 51.) c. 67 B.C.
Note: After the visit of the resurrected Christ to the Nephites and Lamanites, and for about 200 years, the people were unified and there was no manner of
"-ites" among them. (4 Ne. 1:17.)