Tel Gezer

Royal City of Solomon

Located just off the main road running between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in the famous Aijalon Valley, the ancient site of Tel Gezer guards the junction of the Via Maris with the Aijalon Valley. The site has a rich history that begins with the Canaanites right up to the modern era. Gezer is a site of great Biblical significance that is associated with both Joshua (Joshua 10) and King Solomon (I Kings 10:15–16). It is also mentioned in several extra-Biblical texts associated with Thutmosis III, Merneptah and Tighlath-Pileser III.

Biblical Archaeology: From the Ground Down

How does a dig team work? What do archaeologists look for at a dig? In this documentary DVD, learn how excavators work and what we can learn from archaeology. More information.

This season will be the tenth of the expedition. Gezer is well-known and hotly debated due to its association with Solomon and various models of state development, ethnic and political borders, and the nature of Egyptian hegemony during the Late Bronze Age II. This year, excavations will complete the exposure of "Solomon's Palace" and will continue to reveal the rich Late Bronze Age (Amarna period) stratum.

Steven Ortiz

Steven OrtizSteven Ortiz Steven Ortiz is a professor of archaeology and biblical backgrounds at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and the director of the Tandy Institute for Archaeology. He is currently the co-director and principal investigator at Tel Gezer. His research focus is the Iron Age in the southern Levant. He specializes in the use of archeological methods and theory in the interpretation of the past. Specifically, how this enterprise can illuminate and reconstruct history relative to ancient Israel and the Hebrew Bible.

Sam Wolff

Sam WolffSam Wolff earned his Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in 1986, and has been with the Israel Antiquities Authority since 1991. In addition to his current project at Tel Gezer, Dr. Wolff has also directed excavations at Tel Megadim, En Haggit and Tel Hamid.

Dig Directors

Steven Ortiz
Sam Wolff

Geographic Location

Between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem

Periods of Occupation

Bronze Age, Iron Age, Hellenistic Period

Dates of the Dig

May 15 – June 9, 2017

Minimum Stay

Two weeks

Application Due

March 31, 2017


$2,400 for complete season - airfare not included

Academic Credit/Cost per Credit/Institution

3–6 credits (undergraduate and graduate); $500.00/3-unit course; awarded by Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary


Volunteers will be housed in bungalow-style air-conditioned rooms at Neve Shalom/Wahat al Salam/Oasis of Peace, which is located about three miles from the site. Neve Shalom features a coffee bar, pool and a beautiful view of the Aijalon Valley. Wi-fi is also available. See Cost includes full room and board as well as weekend sightseeing excursion (extra cost).


Dr. Steven Ortiz
Tandy Institute for Archaeology Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
P.O. Box 22308
Fort Worth, TX 76122
Phone: 817-923-1921 x 4455

Open for tours

Yes — by appointment