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Pieces of Egyptian history in Midway

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POSTED: April 9, 2008 5:00 a.m.
Emily Peterson / Coastal Courier/

Alfred Williams

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Egyptian history may be a little bit closer to Hinesville than you think.
Alfred Williams opened the BARR (Biblical Africa Research Recovery, Inc.) Institute and the Replica Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, a non-profit organization, at the Dorchester Center in Midway in February last year. According to Williams, it is the first, and only of its kind, dedicated to Africa's relationship to the Bible.
"I try to show how Egypt is relevant today," Williams said.
His two main audiences in Hinesville are the schools and churches.
"Originally, the museum was created to educate pastors, but I felt that I needed to broaden it," he said.
With students, Williams will teach them about three of the most popular figures in Egyptian history; King Tut, Nefertiti and Cleopatra. Williams will also talk about different Egyptian customs, how mummies were made, and the pyramids.
Williams has gone to several schools in the county and has had classes visit the museum at Dorchester.
Williams discusses the African presence in the Bible when he meets with churches. People such as Moses' wife Zipporah and the Queen of Sheba are brought to attention. Based on the BARR's conservative chronology, there are many lesser-known biblical figures who helped defend Israel against the Assyrians, and this shows how Africa can be incorporated into all faith traditions.
Williams has a third audience as well -- scholars. Through archaeology and Egyptology methods, BARR attempts to demonstrate that Egypt had much more influence on the Bible than is generally thought.
Williams has published two books, "Thothian Hermeneutics" and "An Introduction into Biblical Africa." He also has a bimonthly, online journal that addresses other scholars, "The Journal of Biblical Africa." He has another book coming out later this year entitled, "Biblical Africa Revolution."
Williams is thankful that he has been able to set up the BARR and museum at Dorchester.
"Dorchester has been so very nice to me to let me set up here. They've been very, very kind."
The museum contains many Egyptian replicas, along with paintings of figures in Egyptian history.
"My job is to present what is fact, and I do it by replication," Williams said.
He said it is hard to get original artifacts because so many have been stolen.
Williams said he hopes to open a gift shop in the museum.
He holds a master's degree in Egyptology with a concentration in Biblical Archaeology. He and his wife, Dr. Quintessa Britton-Williams, and their two children, Jordan and Makaya, have lived in the Hinesville area for six years.
The museum is open for tours by scheduling only. To schedule a tour, call 492-5493.
 

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