Position Summary:

The Curator of Collections and Exhibitions shall be responsible for managing the collections and conservation program, developing permanent and changing exhibits, and responding to research and photo collections requests.  Reporting to the Executive Director, the Curator of Collections and Exhibitions works closely with staff and the Museum Board of Trustees to develop and execute an annual collections and exhibitions plan. The Curator of Collections and Exhibitions will play a vital role within the Museum especially as we gear up to celebrate the bicentennial of the Erie Canal beginning in 2017.


  • Manage the Museum’s collection, including maintaining the accession files, collection catalogue records, and the PastPerfect database.
  • Identify and respond to the needs of the collection by monitoring climate control, conservation, cataloguing, and storage needs.
  • Provide expertise when dealing with Onondaga County Facilities & State Historic Preservation Office regarding issues of alterations and long term maintenance to the 1850 Weighlock Building.
  • Work collaboratively with Director to improve collections through assessment, deaccessioning, and acquisition, according to policy.
  • Conduct research and disseminate knowledge regarding the collection to the trustees, staff and public.
  • Propose, develop and maintain long-term exhibits, and plan, coordinate, and install short-term exhibitions.
  • Respond to requests for research, printed, photographic and video materials.
  • Present lectures and gallery talks, and write materials as needed for exhibitions, educational programs, publications, grant proposals, press releases, social media, etc.
  • Assist Director of Development with grants by identifying sources, aiding in preparation, and administering grant funded projects to insure compliance with grant terms and obligations.
  • Supervise staff, interns, and volunteers working on collections and exhibition projects.
  • Other duties as needed or assigned.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Strong knowledge of museum curatorial principles and best practices.
  • Strong research and computer skills, including Microsoft Office and Adobe Creative Suite.
  • Experience using a Collections Management Database such as Past Perfect.
  • Experience researching and writing grants.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with a variety of stakeholders, including colleagues and peers, the Museum Trustees, volunteers, varied external partners, and the general public.
  • Ability to implement complex projects with minimal supervision.
  • Ability to effectively supervise collection and exhibition staff, volunteers, and interns.


  • Minimum of three years of museum experience overseeing complex collections and developing exhibitions.
  • Bachelor’s degree required and a Master’s degree in history, museum studies or related field is strongly preferred.

This position is a full-time salaried position and eligible for the Museum’s benefit package.

Applications should include the following:

cover letter, resume, writing sample, and three professional references.

Applications should be submitted via email to Natalie Stetson at

Application deadline: April 25, 2016. No phone calls please.

The Erie Canal Museum is an American Alliance of Museum accredited history museum with the mission to preserve the only existing weighlock building in the United States, collect and conserve Canal material, champion an appreciation and understanding of Erie Canal history through educational programming, and promote an awareness of the Canal’s transforming effects on the past, present and future.

Job Information
  • Syracuse, New York, 13202, United States
  • 27588172
  • March 25, 2016
  • Curator of Collections and Exhibitions
  • Erie Canal Museum
  • Curator
  • No
  • Full-Time
  • Indefinite
  • BA/BS/Undergraduate
  • 2-3 Years
  • 0-10%

About Erie Canal Museum

The Erie Canal Museum opened its doors over 50 years ago and annually welcomes around 20,000 visitors to the 1850 National Register Syracuse Weighlock Building. Committed to preserving the only existing weighlock building in the United States, the Erie Canal Museum collects and conserves Canal material champions an appreciation and understanding of Erie Canal history through educational programming, and promotes an awareness of the Canal’s transforming effects on the past, present and future. The Museum shares 200 years of Erie Canal history through interactive displays, hands-on exhibits, narrative audio tracks and original artifacts. It includes a full-size replica canal boat, exhibits about Erie Canal commerce and communities, and the award-winning Locktender’s Garden. The Erie Canal Museum, which is located in downtown Syracuse, also serves as the Heritage Area Visitor Center.

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