Explore biblical artifacts in downtown Sandy
Minister opens personal historic collection to community
Ever wondered what life was like during the era the Bible was written?
Oregon City resident Bob Stancell has opened a portion of his historical collection for public viewing in Sandy, just east of the Sandy Historical Museum on Highway 26.
I just wanted to share it with the community, Stancell said. For me, it brings the events in the Bible to life. I just think its interesting to visually see it.
Stancell, who is a minister at the Church of Christ in Sandy, 39640 Highway 26, where the exhibit can be seen, started displaying pieces from his collection in the basement of the church this summer and decided to keep it going.
Stancell, who has a certificate in Roman architecture from Yale University, Greek and Roman mythology from the University of Pennsylvania and the fall and rise of Jerusalem from Tel Aviv University, is an enthusiastic collector of artifacts from biblical times.
Or maybe I just like junk, he admitted with a laugh.
One of the first exhibits of his collection was a set of Roman legion nails, unearthed in the United Kingdom and dating back to between 83 and 87 A.D., which became the basis for his Roman Crucifixion display.
Stancells Bible Lands Museum also includes replicas of pottery, weaponry, clothing and art created before the end of the first century A.D.
In addition, the exhibit features ancient Roman artifacts, a 400-year-old Yemen scroll fragment of the book of Exodus 16:26-17:13, and, Stancells personal favorite, three Persian and Greek Bronze arrows from the collection of Axel Guttmann dating back to 1000 B.C.
Archeology has confirmed again and again the accounts recorded in the Bible are actual places and events, Stancell noted. My collection highlights some of these events and hopefully will bring the Bible to life for those who go through the exhibit.
Stancell plans to continue adding to the collection as he finishes creating new models and maps. He also hopes to eventually add an activity station where children can learn to write cuneiform (one of the earliest systems of writing) and Egyptian hieroglyphs.
While the museum has had only a few visitors since it began, Stancell said each of them enjoyed the experience. He added that the collection takes about 45 minutes to explore if you read each of his educational postings next to the artifacts.
The Bible Lands Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. School groups, church groups, professional organizations and anyone else who wants to drop by is welcome.