Mellon Fellowship, Objects Conservation

Employment Opportunity

Historic New England, a national model for the care of regional heritage buildings, landscapes and collections, is seeking a Mellon Fellow, Objects Conservation, to join its Collections Services team.

Historic New England is the oldest and largest regional preservation organization in the United States, and owns and operates 37 historic house museums in five states, from Rhode Island to mid-coast Maine. With more than 123,000 objects, Historic New England has the most comprehensive and best-documented collection of New England decorative arts and household furnishings in the country. These collections, which date from the mid-seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries, include a range of domestic items including European and American decorative arts, furniture, textiles, wallpaper and paintings, as well as cooking, lighting and heating equipment.

Location: Haverhill, Mass.

Basic Function: This is a one-year fellowship position with the possibility of an additional one-year extension. The Mellon Fellow is primarily responsible for the examination, photography, treatment, and research of objects in the museum’s permanent collection both within the collection facility and onsite at Historic New England’s historic house museums. Additional duties include preventive conservation, exhibition preparation, integrated pest management, conservation laboratory tours, and public outreach.

Challenges and Opportunities: The Mellon Fellow will balance a variety of projects and keep up to date with new developments in the field. The fellow must be able to work collaboratively with staff across the organization to meet team and institutional goals. The fellow will work closely with the Objects Conservator in a spacious, productive, and well-equipped conservation laboratory and have the opportunity to treat a wide variety of materials.

Projects for the year include treatment of objects, furnishings, and textiles from several properties, including Beauport, The Sleeper-McCann House (Gloucester, Mass.), Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and Visitor Center (South Berwick, Me.), Hamilton House (South Berwick, Me.), and Roseland Cottage (Woodstock, Conn.). Onsite treatments will include stabilization of Lincrusta wallcovering and in situ decorative paint finishes. Other tasks consist of installation and deinstallation of exhibitions at the Eustis Estate (Milton, Mass.) and a focus on IPM assessment of several target properties. Additional projects may include various object treatments, collections surveys, monitoring environmental conditions, speaking at public programs, and preventive care activities at individual house museums.

Ideal Experience:

The Community: The fellowship is based at Historic New England’s Conservation Laboratory located in the Haverhill Regional Office in Haverhill, Mass., approximately 45 minutes north of Boston. Active nearby communities include Newburyport and Salem, Mass. and Portsmouth and Manchester, N.H. Haverhill is well located off interstates 95 and 495 and is close to beaches, mountains, and vibrant cities.

Compensation: The stipend for the fellowship is $36,000 annually with reimbursement available for approved travel and research. The compensation package includes three weeks of paid vacation, twelve paid holidays, health and dental benefits administered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of New England, and other wellness benefits.

Applications: Interested and qualified candidates may send curriculum vitae, cover letter, and copies of two conservation treatment reports to [email protected] or mail to Historic New England, 151 Essex Street, Haverhill, MA 01832, Attn: Michaela Neiro, Objects Conservator. Deadline March 20, 2020.

Historic New England is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer with a strong commitment to supporting equality of opportunity and respect for diversity. We are committed to providing equal opportunity in employment to all qualified persons without regard to non-work-related factors such as race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, national origin, gender identity or sexual orientation.