Plimoth Patuxet Museums

PO Box 1620
Plymouth, MA 02362

Date Posted:
November 04, 2019

Eastern Massachusetts



Public Humanities Project Coordinators (One-Year)


The Public Humanities Fellows will join Plimoth Plantation at a pivotal moment in the Museum's history. As we enter the important anniversary years of 2020 and 2021, Plimoth is in the process of implementingAlong the Shores of Change, the first comprehensive interpretive plan in the Museum's 75-year history. This transformation is made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

We are seeking candidates to fill two positions -- one focused on the history of Indigenous southern New England through 1700, and the other focused on 17th-century Anglo-European/Indigenous interactions which occurred across the same landscape.Through their original research as well as their role in the development of accurate and engaging exhibits, educational programs, publications and staff training materials, fellows will advance the Museum's efforts to broaden public understanding of 17th-century America. One fellow’s research project will focus on patterns of material exchange evidenced in Native and colonial dwellings between 1620 and 1692 by creating an object-based history experienced across all the Museum's living history sites. Another research project will deepen the Museum's thinking on and representation of religion and spirituality in the development and transformation of 17th-century communities in southern New England. Fellows will also assist in the planning and implementation of a plenary conference in March 2020.

The ideal candidate will have a strong scholarly interest in the 17th-century history of the Atlantic World with particular emphasis on colonial and Indigenous New England. Some experience in public history, or a demonstrated desire to learn about the field, is required.

Current areas of scholarly interest to the Museum include:

  • The history and archaeology of People of the Dawn Land (Eastern Woodlands) pre- and post-European contact;

  • The Mayflower Compact and its continued democratic legacies;

  • The history and archaeology of the region’s first colonial and Indigenous families, their Worlds, and Everyday Lives through 1692;

  • Indigenous and Anglo-European civic and community structures and expanding geopolitical networks through 1692;

  • The impact and influence of New England’s dual spiritual realms (Manitou and Providence) and their relationships to spirituality today;

  • The evolution of the First Thanksgiving as an American holiday and its continued significance.

In your application, please address your work in one of these areas. Personal research on topics relevant to advancing research on Plimoth’s historical story are also encouraged.

These are full-time, temporary positions. Fellowships carry a stipend of $30,000 per year, paid on a monthly basis, plus benefits. Housing may also available at the Center for 17th-Century Studies at Plimoth’s scholars residence. The application deadline is October 31, 2019. Start date will be in January 6, 2020 with a term of one year.


  • Pursue professional and program development by conducting the appropriate research, consulting with experts and peers and preparing documentation for internal and external publications.

  • Collaborate with the Associate Director of Interpretation & Training to train Living History Educators in the most up-to-date, accurate historical interpretation of Plymouth Colony as well as observing interpretation on the historic sites and assessing the training materials’ effectiveness in public performance.

  • Research and draft training materials for content delivered using first-person, third-person and theatrical techniques that include both colonial and Native perspectives on New England history.

  • Mentor Museum staff in developing their study skills and competencies, in maintaining the highest standards for museum programs and exhibits, and in developing new programs and exhibits for the benefit of our Museum audiences.

  • As needed, serve on teams advancing special projects, exhibits, grant proposals, public relations, and special events.

  • Serve as a valuable professional resource in specialized areas that serve Plimoth Plantation, the museum field and the wider range of interested individuals and organizations.

  • Collaborate with Museum Directors in moving the organization forward both programmatically and as a healthy, productive workplace and prominent cultural institution with a national and international reputation for excellence.

  • Other duties as assigned.



  • Recent completion (within the last 5 years) of an MA or PhD in History, Archaeology, Public History, Public Archaeology, Native American Studies, Anthropology, or American Studies.

  • Demonstrated interest in or understanding of the 17th-century social, political, spiritual and economic history of the British Atlantic World with special emphasis on colonial and Indigenous New England.

  • Fellows should also understand the spectrum of learning styles and be able to apply this knowledge in interactions with Museum guests, outside researchers, and students.


In accordance with the requirements of the National Endowment for the Humanities, scholars may not:

  • Be currently enrolled in a degree-granting program; or

  • Hold teaching or administrative assignments during the one-year period.

How To Apply:

Applicants must submit the following materials via email to the Human Resources Department, (

  • A cover letter;

  • CV;

  • Graduate School Transcript;

  • A brief (less than 5 pages) writing sample in an area related to the applicant’s scholarly interests within the field of 17th-century Atlantic World history;

  • Three letters of recommendation.

Apply by:
November 26, 2019
About this Organization:
One of America’s foremost living history museums and an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, the Plimoth Patuxet Museums hosts more than 350,000 visitors from around the world each year. Plimoth offers powerful personal encounters with history built on thorough research about the Indigenous People of southeastern Massachusetts and the Colonial English community in the 1600s. In addition to its most famous exhibits, historically accurate recreations of a 1627 English Village, the Mayflower II, and a Wampanoag Homesite, Plimoth Grist Mill, the museum offers an array of year-round educational programs.