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‘Journey Through Biblical History’ exhibit opens

January 17, 2017 12:00 AM
Pikeville, Ky.
A museum exhibit of biblical proportions will be opening this weekend in eastern Kentucky. The University of Pikeville, in partnership with the City of Pikeville and Community Trust Bank, will host “Khirbet el-Maqatir & a Journey through Biblical History” opening Friday, Jan. 20. The exhibit will be on display in Pikeville through the summer and features approximately 250 artifacts from ancient Israel, Jordan, Egypt and Syria. The artifacts on display represent several biblical periods in history from the time of Abraham, to Joshua’s conquest, ancient Babylon and the Second Temple era and time of Jesus.

A significant number of artifacts came from the largest current archaeological excavation in Israel at the site of Khirbet el-Maqatir. Archaeologists believe evidence indicates the site is the biblical fortress of Ai mentioned in the book of Joshua. It is also likely that the site was named Ephraim in the Roman era and a location visited by Jesus and his disciples.

In celebration of the opening weekend, the university has invited seven archaeologists and museum curators to visit Pikeville. These experts will share with visitors about ancient artifacts on display in the exhibit as they help host the grand opening.

“It’s exciting to be working on a project that one would only expect to see in a large metro area,” said Tommy Chamberlin, exhibit director and president of the University of Pikeville’s Alumni Association. “We are so proud to bring artifacts from the ancient world of the Bible to Appalachia. Our grand opening weekend gives our visitors the rare opportunity to discuss ancient artifacts on display with real archaeologists. Can you image discussing an artifact that was used in Israel during the life of Christ with the archaeologist who dug it up? Visitors to our grand opening will have that opportunity.”

Tickets to the opening weekend are $15 per person and are available HERE or calling the university at (606) 218-5276. It is recommended to purchase tickets in advance as they are limited.

“We are expecting a large crowd this weekend and it’s possible we may sell out. While the exhibit will be open for months to come this will be the only opportunity to see it with the archaeologists. That’s an experience we can’t replicate,” Chamberlin commented.

he exhibit will be hosted in downtown Pikeville at the newly renovated York House and will be open to the public on Friday, Jan. 20, from 1-5 p.m., and on Saturday, Jan. 21, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Additionally, a special opening banquet will be held on the UPIKE campus on Thursday, Jan. 19 at 7 p.m. Call (606) 218-5276 for more information.

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