Museum Studies at Tufts University

Exploring ideas and engaging in conversation

New England Furniture Class

Explore New England furniture at this in-depth series. Historic New
England Senior Curator of Collections Nancy Carlisle introduces
furniture made and used in New England from the seventeenth to
the mid-nineteenth century. Learn about regional variations in style,
changing shop practices, consumer patterns, craftsmanship, and
technology. Examine original pieces from Historic New England’s
extensive collection up close. The course concludes with a tour of the
furniture collection and conservation lab.

Wednesdays, 2–4 pm:
October 4: Seventeenth Century and William and Mary Style
October 11: Queen Anne and Chippendale Styles
October 18: Federal and Empire Styles
October 25: Victorian and Arts and Craft Styles
November 1: In-depth tour of furniture storage
Per class: $20, $15 Historic New England members and students
Series pricing: $75, $50 Historic New England members and students

Registration required. In order to attend the in-depth tour of furniture storage, Wednesday, November 1, you must register for the entire series. For more information and to register, call 617-994-5959 or visit HistoricNewEngland.org

Haverhill Facility,151 Essex Street, Haverhill, Massachusetts

Historic New England Field School in Preservation Practice

Historic New England is pleased to announce that its Field School in Preservation Practice will this year focus on “Using Easements to Protect Historic Property” and will take place Friday, October 13 and Saturday, October 14 in Shirley Center and Harvard, Massachusetts.

Through lectures, case studies, and field observations at historic sites in Shirley and Harvard, advocates in historic preservation, museum, and related fields will learn from Historic New England and other experts, including noted restoration educator Robert Adam, how to manage and administer preservation easements for historic public and private property. The program will focus on all aspects of using preservation easements, from identifying character defining features, implementing preservation restriction agreements, and assessing the condition of historic fabric, to ongoing easement monitoring, identifying treatment options, and managing project approvals.

The Field School will include group exercises and will provide graduate students, preservation and museum professionals, and others responsible for historic properties and easement administration an in-depth examination of Historic New England’s long-standing preservation easement program, which protects 106 notable properties across New England.

Register online at https://www.historicnewengland.org/visit/events/?start_date=2017-10-13; space is limited to 20. $200, $150 for Historic New England members, $75 for students with ID. Fee includes lunch on Saturday, snacks and beverages both Friday and Saturday; lodging and travel to practicum sites not included.

For more information, please visit HistoricNewEngland.org or contact Sally Zimmerman, Senior Preservation Services Manager, at 617-994-6644

 

Audience Engagement Coordinator [Senator John Heinz History Center, Pittsburgh, PA]

The Museum: From the pre-revolutionary drama of the French & Indian War to the legendary match-ups of the Super Steelers, discover 250 years of Pittsburgh history at the Senator John Heinz History Center. An affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, the History Center is the largest history museum in Pennsylvania with six floors of long-term and changing exhibition space. The History Center’s museum system includes the Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum, a dynamic museum-within-a-museum; the Fort Pitt Museum in Point State Park; and Meadowcroft Rockshelter & Historic Village, a National Historic Landmark located in Avella, Pa. in Washington County. The History Center presents the most compelling stories from American history with a Western Pennsylvania connection, all in an interactive environment perfect for visitors of every age.

The Position: The Heinz History Center, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and the largest history museum in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is currently seeking a full time Audience Engagement Coordinator to become part of a dynamic and growing Education Division program. The Audience Engagement Coordinator will report to the Director of Education, working to oversee the Education Division’s interpretive volunteers, including docents and gallery volunteers, and to develop in-gallery learning experiences for the public. These learning experiences should maximize the engagement of both interpretive volunteers and visitors. The Audience Engagement Coordinator develops and implements programmatic opportunities and leads the recruitment of a diverse volunteer corps, scheduling, training, and evaluation of the interpretive volunteers who support these gallery-based programs. Beyond solidifying and strengthening the existing interpretive volunteer program, the Audience Engagement Coordinator will collaborate with the Director of Education, Volunteer Program Coordinator, and Museum Division team to create new roles for interpretive volunteers in the galleries to increase the range of opportunities available. This position also works to establish and maintain positive relationships between the interpretive volunteers, museum staff, and audiences.

Requirements: This position requires a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in education, history, museum education, education, or other humanities or liberal arts discipline. The ideal candidate will: have a minimum of one to three years’ experience managing volunteers and developing programs for the public; demonstrated skills in developing and implementing training programs in an informal learning setting, with preference for museum-based experience; effective oral and listening skills and the ability to work effectively with people of diverse cultures, ages, and economic backgrounds; excellent writing skills; must have a positive approach to problem solving, collaborating with others, and in approaching new tasks; excellent project management skills and ability to use Microsoft Office suite of programs.

Application Process: We are an Equal Opportunity Employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin or disability. Minorities are encouraged to apply. Qualified applicants should submit a cover letter, including salary requirements and how you learned of this vacancy, and a resume to:

Renee Falbo, Director of Human Resources

Senator John Heinz History Center, 1212 Smallman Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15222

412-454-6357, hr@heinzhistorycenter.org, www.heinzhistorycenter.org

Weekly Jobs Roundup!

Here’s our weekly roundup of new jobs. Happy hunting!

New England        

Mid-Atlantic        

Midwest

South

West              

Mobile Guide Review- Historic New England’s Eustis Estate

Mobile Guide Review- Historic New England’s Eustis Estate

This mobile guide review comes from Max Metz, who is in his second year in the Masters of Museum Education program and is the Manager and Anne Larner Educator at the Durant-Kenrick House and Grounds of Historic Newton. To see more of Max’s contributions to the blog, click here.

The Eustis Estate Museum, owned and operated by Historic New England (HNE), is in Milton, Massachusetts – roughly 15 miles south of downtown Boston. With its most recent acquisition and creation of its first permanent gallery space, HNE also created a full-scale mobile guide that mirrors in-gallery media to enhance its interpretation and create greater access to content across devices and geography.

As you begin your museum experience in the visitor’s center near the parking lot, the museum attendant orients you to the screens that you will find throughout the museum and how to access the same content on your own device if you prefer. This opens the guide to many different audiences and various levels of knowledge about technology, historic homes, and museums in general. However, the guide is aimed at an adult audience with interest in historic homes and the history of developing America.

As you transition to the historic home, in each room you will find a large touchscreen panel that serves as the interpretation to the space. The screen is automatically queued up to the interpretation for that room however the interpretation for the entire estate is also within the device to explore if one wants to. In other rooms that contain historic furniture that can be sat in, there smaller tablet-sized touchscreens that continue the interpretive journey. The large screens that will be used when standing or in a wheelchair, tethered small screens to be used while resting or taking in the space while seated, or the guide on your own device creates wide accessibility and flexibility in times of high visitor volume in the house.

The guide itself was very successful in orienting the visitor to the room and where that room exists in the house, connecting the stories of people who lived in or worked at the estate to the objects and rooms within the home and property, providing detailed photos and context regarding the objects within the space that may be too far away from the stanchions to see in full detail, and bringing everything together with supporting documentation in the form of photos of historic archival letters, family photos, sound recordings, and other memorabilia. If the visitor wants to dig deeper he can, if not the initial interoperation serves to enlighten the visitor and enrich the experience within the room.

One of the greatest attributes of the application was that it can be taken home with you, or used before your visit. HNE developed the mobile guide as a website that looks like a downloadable application, however it requires no special technology brought by the user. All one has to do is go to eustis.estatewithin a browser and you are on the mobile guide. If there is a question after the trip or if more exploration is wanted after leaving, the educational journey doesn’t stop.  By using the web-based application, if there is additional content uncovered by the staff, or if a typo is discovered, or if by studying the user data staff decide to provide more tools to learn about a specific topic it can be added seamlessly without continual updating of devices. This adaptable, sharp, and user-focused guide is very successful in providing a visitor-centered experience with information curated in learning paths for the visitor’s learning pleasure.

Furthermore, the guide, in the way in which it is installed in the galleries/rooms, provides an unencumbered view of the space and avoids the historic house pitfall of polka dot labels all around the room. It truly enhances the collection and the viewing/learning experience of the visitor. It seems like a fresh approach to historic homes and a good use of technology that is not wed to any proprietary coding or vender. By using the guide, the visitor is easily able to understand who lived in the house, what their role was in that family, how they used the estate, and their connection to local history. Although the content seemed to be developed for adults, children can easily access the intuitive screens and interact with well-written interpretation or explore media on the devices.

In the future, if the site is marketed to school groups or becomes popular with younger audiences, it would be remarkable if another site like the eustis.estate site was developed for the younger audience. Imagine if a fourth-grade group was scheduled and the museum could switch all the interpretation to a specific program with content aimed at academic standards for that age, with just a touch of a button. Then, when the museum opened for general visitors, switch back to the general interpretation. I could see this same technique happening for private events, Clue style mystery parties, etc. to help bring added income to the property and continue to serve its mission through education. Lastly, HNE does plan on creating additional content to help explore its vast grounds, however at my last visit it was not yet available.

All in all, this was splendidly successful implementation of a mobile guide that is both stationary and mobile in and around the museum. I saw visitors successfully navigating the site and engaged in discussion with each other using the interpretation as a starting point to dive into the history and stories of the property and objects. I look forward to seeing HNE use this same model at it over 30 other properties.

« Older posts

Spam prevention powered by Akismet

Switch to our desktop site