Volunteers and Interns

Become a part of our team

Get close to the past by volunteering or interning at Historic New England. Whether you are a student or recent graduate looking for hands-on experience in the archives, museum, and historic preservation fields or a history buff with skills and time to share, Historic New England offers a wide range of opportunities to contribute to the preservation of the region’s history and built environment.

Historic New England offers internships to graduate and undergraduate students pursuing degrees in American studies, American history, museum studies, arts administration, preservation studies, art and architectural history, library and information science, and related fields. Interns have the opportunity to work with Historic New England’s extraordinary and rich collection of historic structures and landscapes, archival collections of photographs, architectural drawings, and ephemera, and material culture collections.

Internships require a minimum commitment of eight hours per week, typically during regular business hours, and are usually located at Otis House in Boston; the Lyman Estate in Waltham, Mass.; or our collections facility in Haverhill, Mass.

Fill out an application and email it to Internships@HistoricNewEngland.org.

Photo Gallery

Internships

Agathe, a 2014 French Heritage Intern, works with archival objects at Historic New England's Library and Archives in Boston.

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  • Internships

    Agathe, a 2014 French Heritage Intern, works with archival objects at Historic New England's Library and Archives in Boston.

  • Volunteer Opportunities

    Members of the Massachusetts Master Gardeners Association help out at the Lyman Estate in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Volunteer Opportunities

Help us preserve and share New England heritage

Volunteer opportunities vary from helping at major events, assisting with office work, and working with curators in the archives or material culture collections. Some volunteers work a regularly scheduled day each week, others just specific events a few times a year.

Volunteer benefits include free admission to all Historic New England properties, discount of 20% on most Historic New England publications and merchandise, complimentary admission to programs and events that you work (and other programs as space permits), and complimentary one-year membership after 100 hours of volunteer work.

For general inquiries, fill out a volunteer information sheet and email it to Volunteer@HistoricNewEngland.org, or browse the current volunteer opportunities below.

Current Volunteer Opportunities:

 

Antique Auto Show Volunteer:

Historic New England hosts two antique auto shows each year, welcoming hundreds of visitors and a fine selection of vintage and antique vehicles from across the region. Events are held at Phillips House in Salem, Massachusetts, and the Codman Estate in Lincoln, Massachusetts.

Opportunity: Pre-event on-site outdoor work, gate admissions, information table, and membership table assistance.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, enjoys interacting with the public, and has strong customer service skills.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to Festivals@HistoricNewEngland.org or call 617-994- 5924 for more information.

 

Fine Arts and Crafts Festival Volunteer:

Historic New England hosts two fine arts and crafts festivals each year, welcoming thousands of visitors and top artisans to the Codman Estate in Lincoln, Massachusetts, and Roseland Cottage in Woodstock, Connecticut.

Opportunity: Pre-event on-site outdoor work, gate admissions, booth sitters, information table, and raffle table assistance. Each volunteer shift is a minimum of four hours.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, enjoys interacting with the public, and has strong customer service skills. Enthusiasm for history, art, and culture.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to Festivals@HistoricNewEngland.org or call 617-994- 5924 for more information.

 

Greeter, Sayward-Wheeler House:

Historic New England seeks a volunteer to assist with a variety of tasks related to visitor services at Sayward-Wheeler House in York Harbor, Maine. Duties include welcoming guests, selling memberships, and collecting admission fees. Training will be provided. Volunteer hours are Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., with other opportunities at special events. Volunteers must be able to work 1 or 2 days per month. Successful candidates will be subject to a background check.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, comfortable working with a cash box and credit card swipe machine (with training provided), enjoys interacting with the public, has strong customer service skills, and has enthusiasm for history.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to JewettHouse@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

Landscape Volunteer, Weeding Wednesdays:

Weeding Wednesdays take place at four different Historic New England properties each month, May to October, from 10:00 a.m. until noon:

Opportunity: Volunteers work alongside Historic New England’s staff experts and members to care for and learn about historic gardens and landscapes. Work includes seasonally appropriate tasks, such as weeding of the gardens and paths, dividing plants, planting new materials, invasives removal, and other clean-up activities.

Skills and Qualifications: Enthusiasm for gardens and landscapes, historic sites, and getting your hands dirty. No prior landscape or gardening experience necessary.

Participants can drop in on the day of the activity. For more information, please contact Melinda Huff at 617-994-5940 or mhuff@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

Open House Volunteer:

Most Historic New England properties are open for free during our annual Open House on the first Saturday in June. We need your help making sure each and every visitor feels welcome and learns more about Historic New England.

Opportunity: Welcome and orient visitors to the property; provide visitors with information about Historic New England properties, events, and programs; serve as a membership “ambassador” by providing information on the benefits of membership.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, enjoys interacting with the public, and has strong customer service skills.

To Participate: Please contact Melinda Huff at mhuff@HistoricNewEngland.org or call 617-994-5940.

 

Public Program Volunteer:

Historic New England hosts a wide range of public programs at historic properties throughout the region, from large-scale festivals to cocktail parties, workshops, and special tours.

Opportunity: Public program volunteer responsibilities include greeting guests, selling admission tickets, assisting with program setup, answering questions about Historic New England, selling memberships, and assisting the site manager as needed. This is a unique opportunity to spend time in a variety of inspiring settings. Training will be provided. Successful candidates will be subject to a background check.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, enjoys interacting with the public, and has strong customer service skills. Enthusiasm for history, art, and culture.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to Volunteer@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

Public Relations Volunteer:

With historic properties, exhibitions, events, and more happening in six New England states, Historic New England gets covered by local, regional, national, and even international media outlets throughout the year.

Opportunity: Lend a hand in the Historic New England public relations office by scanning press clippings, uploading them to our digital asset management system, and filing the hard copies. This is a great way to better understand the full scope of Historic New England’s work, and to get experience in the field of museum public relations.

Location: Otis House, Boston, Mass.

Skills and Qualifications: Some prior knowledge of local and regional media outlets. Attention to detail. Solid filing and data entry skills, including basic understanding of keywords and metadata. Familiarity with Photoshop a plus.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to News@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

Shop Attendant and Greeter, Gropius House

Walter Gropius, founder of the German design school known as the Bauhaus, was one of the most influential architects of the twentieth century. Modest in scale, the 1938 Gropius House in Lincoln, Massachusetts, was revolutionary in impact. In keeping with Bauhaus philosophy, every aspect of the house and its surrounding landscape was planned for maximum efficiency and simplicity of design. With all the family possessions still in place, the house has an immediacy rarely found in house museums.

Opportunity: Historic New England seeks a volunteer to assist with a variety of tasks related to visitor services at Gropius House. Duties include welcoming guests, selling merchandise and memberships, and collecting admission fees. Training will be provided. Gropius House is open Wednesday to Sunday from June through October and Saturday and Sunday only from October through June, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Open during these hours, the museum shop not only supports merchandise sales but also acts as a visitor center where tour tickets and memberships are sold. Volunteers must be able to commit to working at least five days per month. Successful candidates will be subject to a background check.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer is reliable, friendly, comfortable using a computer cash register (with training provided), enjoys interacting with the public, and has strong customer service skills. Enthusiasm for mid-century Modern and history is a plus. Retail experience is helpful, but not required.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to GropiusHouse@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

Tour Translation Volunteer

Historic New England welcomes over 200,000 visitors to its sites and programs each year, including visitors from around the world.

Opportunity: Translations of written tour narratives are needed in the following languages: French, German, Japanese, Mandarin, Spanish, Vietnamese.

Skills and Qualifications: The ideal volunteer translator is reliable, detail-oriented, and able to work independently. An interest in American history, museum studies, art, or architectural history is preferred. Prior translation experience is required.

To Apply: Please fill out a volunteer information sheet and send it to Volunteer@HistoricNewEngland.org.

 

More to Explore

Become a member and help support the preservation of New England heritage.

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Visit Historic New England's museum properties.

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Read past issues of Historic New England magazine.

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