Document Type

Finding Aid

Publication Date


Inclusive Dates--Span


Inclusive Dates--Bulk


Scope and Content Note

These papers include William Wesley Grasham’s research and topical files, image slides, and some multimedia and print materials.

Biographical Note

Biographical information excerpted from obituary:

“Bill was born on August 2, 1930 in Phoenix, Arizona to John and Olive Grasham. He served in the United States Navy and played on the Pacific Fleet Championship baseball team in 1949. He was voted the most valuable player that year and was offered several major league baseball contracts upon leaving the Navy. His desire to go to college resulted in his not pursuing a career in baseball, but rather becoming a preacher, which then became his passion for the remainder of his life. On May 4, 1952, he married the love of his life, Eleanor Marie Spainhower in Antioch, California. They were married for 63 years.

Bill preached for over sixty years in Texas, California, Arizona, Germany and Scotland. He received a B.A. in 1962 and an M.A. in History and Bible in 1968 from Pepperdine University. He studied at Fuller Theological Seminary and received a Ph.D. from the California Graduate School of Theology in 1970. He also received a M.Div. from Abilene Christian University in 1975. From 1975 to 1978, Bill and his family lived in Kaiserslautern, Germany, where he preached for an American military congregation. Then they moved to Aberdeen, Scotland so he could further his education. While there, Bill helped establish a local church congregation. He was awarded a Ph.D. in 1985 from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland upon completion of a dissertation that examined the nature of the Qumran community, the writers of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Bill did post-doctoral studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and also participated in archaeological digs at Tel Dor in Israel. For over fifteen years, he taught Old and New Testament and Biblical Theology courses at the Center for Christian Education in Dallas, Texas. Over the years, Bill also taught courses at both McMurry and Abilene Christian University. He retired in 2005 but continued to present seminars for graduate students on the Bible and archaeology and on the gospel in the Old Testament. Bill was a life-long student of the Bible and was author of the two-volume Truth for Today Commentary on the Book of Genesis.

Bill and Eleanor spent many of their years together in Dallas and attended the Preston Road Church of Christ but also lived in Abilene five different times for a total of 18 years. In Abilene, they attended the Minter Lane Church of Christ.”

[See “William Wesley Grasham,”,

Donor Note

Gift of Terri Grasham Peterson


The original order of the materials was maintained as much as possible.



Extent of Collection

22 linear feet (38 boxes)

Manuscript Number

Center for Restoration Studies Manuscripts #515

Physical Location

Center for Restoration Studies

Use Restrictions

Open to researchers. Contact Abilene Christian University Special Collections and Archives to make an appointment.

Processing Status


Finding Aid created by

Brianna Mullins, Avery Reinoehl, Mac Ice and Amanda Dietz


Please contact us with questions about our holdings or to schedule a research visit.



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