Curator of Manuscripts and Archival Collections
New-York Historical Society Museum & Library
Job posted to this site on August 1st at 10:32am
Application Deadline: September 1st 2022
JOB TITLE: Curator of Manuscripts and Archival Collections
REPORTS TO: Director of Library Curatorial Affairs & Research
ABOUT NEW-YORK HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Visitors experience 400 years of history through groundbreaking exhibitions, immersive films, and thought-provoking conversations among renowned historians and public figures at the New-York Historical Society, New York’s first museum. A great destination for history since 1804, the Museum and the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library convey the stories of the city and nation’s diverse populations, expanding our understanding of who we are as Americans and how we came to be.
The Curator of Manuscripts and Archival Collections is responsible for the development, management, and interpretation of the New-York Historical Society’s manuscript and archival collections. Reporting to the Director of Library Curatorial Affairs & Research, the Curator of Manuscripts and Archival Collections builds manuscript and archival holdings through gifts and purchases, establishes policy and procedures for access to the department’s collections; works with colleagues to increase access to and use of the collections onsite and remotely; determines priorities for the processing, digitization, and conservation; coordinates special projects with other departments and institutions. The Curator promotes the manuscript collection through presentations, exhibitions, and in print and electronic media. The Curator will support New-York Historical Society’s diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility initiatives by building and shaping the manuscript collection, and highlighting and reinterpreting existing material, with emphasis on the histories of the region’s underrepresented and marginalized populations.
ESSENTIAL JOB DUTIES
- Identify potential acquisitions and build manuscript and archival holdings through gifts and purchases;
- Manage a high volume of donation offers, evaluate prospective donations, make site visits and interact regularly with potential donors;
- Promote manuscript and archival collections through presentations, exhibitions, and in print and electronic media;
- Respond to special requests, time sensitive queries and other special institutional initiatives relating to the manuscript holdings;
- Determine insurance valuation for manuscripts loaned to other institutions;
- Select, interpret and present library collections for visiting individuals, groups, and internal and external special projects;
- Establish policy and procedures for use of manuscript collections by researchers onsite;
- Advise public service staff on the provision of manuscript collections, including responding to questions raised by onsite researchers while using collection;
- Set priorities for archival processing, identifying areas of descriptive emphasis, and make curatorial recommendations regarding arrangement and descriptions;
- Work with the Director of the Library Digital Program to identify priority collections for digitization;
- Work with conservation staff to determine preservation needs and priorities within the manuscript collection;
- Oversee and participate in packing and transfer of archival acquisitions when required;
- Participate in securing grant funding opportunities to support N-YHS library initiatives;
- Additional duties as requested.
- M.L.S. from an A.L.A.-accredited library school or advanced degree in a relevant field;
- At least five years’ experience working in a professional capacity in a library with substantial manuscript or other special collection holdings;
- A strong commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging and antiracism, with a commitment to making special collections more accessible and meaningful to a diverse audience;
- Background in the humanities with a knowledge of scholarly trends and the research needs of scholars;
- Significant experience presenting to groups;
- A strong commitment to introducing college and graduate students to the integration of manuscript and archival collections in their research;
- Flexibility and the ability to work cooperatively in a team-based, user-centered environment;
- Excellent interpersonal, communication, and diplomatic skills;
- Thorough understanding of information technologies, automated library systems, and emerging standards and practices, as they apply to special collections and archives.
COMPENSATION & BENEFITS
New-York Historical Society provides a generous benefits package for eligible employees to support their health and wellbeing, which includes:
- Paid time off, including vacation, sick and personal days, and holidays observed by the Museum;
- Medical, dental, vision and life insurance;
- Short and long-term disability coverage options;
- 403(b) retirement plan with eligibility for employer contributions following one year of full-time service;
- Flexible spending accounts for health-related expenses, dependent care, and parking and transit expenses;
- Employee Assistance Program for all employees and their families;
- 20% discount at the NYHistory Store, Parliament Café and Storico restaurant, located within the Museum;
- Free admission to various museums and cultural institutions across the city.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee with or without accommodation, to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.
The employee will spend many hours sitting and using a computer. They will also bend, stoop, and open file cabinets and frequently walk from their desk to collection areas on a different floor. The employee will walk and climbs steps throughout the day and on occasion lift 20 lb. boxes.
COVID-19 VACCINATION POLICY
To ensure the overall health and safety of the New-York Historical Society community and in accordance with New York City requirements, all newly hired employees of the New-York Historical Society are required to be fully-vaccinated (inclusive of booster shots) against COVID-19 as a condition of employment, absent qualifying exemptions for medical, religious, or other reasons in accordance with all applicable laws.
Research shows that women and people from underrepresented groups often apply to jobs only if they meet 100% of the qualifications. We recognize that it is highly unlikely that someone meets 100% of the qualifications for a role. If much of this job description describes you, then please apply for this role.
The New-York Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer
LocationNew-York Historical Society Museum & Library
$85,000 - $90,000 yearly