Since 1887, the Museum has depended on volunteer help for many of its projects and much of its development. Today, more than 100 volunteers participate regularly, making important contributions to the Museum. Some volunteers come in daily, and many have served for 10 or more years!
If you are interested in volunteering at the Penn Museum, please review the volunteer opportunities listed and then submit an application for a specific opportunity. Applications will only be considered for these opportunities. The Penn Museum’s volunteer needs vary throughout the year. If you don’t see a position that is a good fit or of particular interest to you now, please plan to check back at a future time. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis unless otherwise noted.
Historical Archaeology Section Volunteer
Description: The Historical Archaeology Section of the Penn Museum is looking to onboard a group of volunteers to support the research of archaeological materials and archival sources from two specific collections.
- Collections from a planned agricultural town in southern New Jersey founded in 1861. Located in Vineland, New Jersey, the area is still a very living community today.
- Collections from Silver Reef, a 19th century mining town from the West Coast. Although the site is now a ghost town of ruins, the region today is a successful Mormon farming area. The collections from the archaeological site include material from a saloon, drug store, and backyard of a restaurant.
Volunteer and be a part of the ongoing discovery of these materials and the stories they tell of our collective past!
Required Training: Volunteers will be trained and supervised within the Historical Archaeology Section. Volunteers will learn how to work with archaeological materials and archival sources such as period newspapers. Background in computer technology is not required for this work.
Qualifications: Ideal volunteer candidates for this role have a strong interest in American History and in archaeological remains from the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Commitment: Upon acceptance, volunteers could start immediately and set a flexible schedule based on their individual availability. During the summer, volunteers and the Museum Section will work out schedules that are mutually workable. The work is ongoing with no set end date as of now.