Collections Assistant


The Collections Assistant provides support for the organization and preservation of museum collections including objects, documents, and library materials.


  • Catalog items in the collection.
  • Assist with inventorying the collection.
  • Assist with the preparation of museum exhibitions and programming.
  • Create and update database records.
  • Prepare items for display and/or storage.
  • Occasional office work including preparation of collections paperwork, answering phones, and directing visitors.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Examples of Work

  • Use PastPerfect collections database to appropriately catalog collection items. This includes photographing objects, taking accurate measurements, and writing thorough descriptions of objects.
  • Locate objects within the collection for use in museum exhibitions and programming.
  • Use a spreadsheet to track possible donations to the collection.

Job Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Interest in history and behind the scenes work of museums.
  • Demonstrated computer proficiency.
  • Excellent communication and organizational skills.
  • Attention to detail and consistency in procedures and quality of effort in all areas of work.
  • Ability to perform tasks independently.
  • Ability to perform physical tasks, including lifting 30 lbs.
  • Ability to pass a background check.

Preferred Skills

  • Previous database experience.
  • Previous experience as an employee or volunteer in museum collections.

Work Schedule

20-24 hours per week, flexible; $16/hour

To Apply

Submit resume and cover letter to Sarah McDonald at Position open until filled.

The Shelby County Historical Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1964. This four building complex is located at 1805 Morse Avenue Harlan, Iowa 51537.

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