Careers with The Filson Historical Society

The Filson Historical Society, founded in 1884, is a privately-supported historical society dedicated to preserving the history of Kentucky and the Ohio Valley Region. We have serve the public through our extensive library, varied museum artifacts, and our special collections department that includes over 2.1 million original manuscripts, letters, diaries, photographs, architectural records, and portraits.  Our collections form a regional educational resource that attracts national and international researchers.

We are an organization dedicated to providing continuing adult education in the form of quarterly peer-reviewed academic journal – the Ohio Valley History, quarterly magazine publications, weekly lectures, historical tours, art exhibits, reading-and-discussion groups, weekend-long conferences and field institutes and excursions.

The Filson Historical Society is a member-supported 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, an equal opportunity employer, and provides its employees with industry competitive salaries and a comprehensive benefits package that includes health, life and disability insurance; a contributory retirement plan; paid holidays; and generous medical leave and vacation.

For general information regarding career opportunities, please contact The Filson Historical Society at 502.635.5083 and ask for Marian Salmon.

Career Opportunities at The Filson

Manager of Development and Membership

The Filson Historical Society seeks a Manager of Development and Membership to build relationships and financial support to accomplish the mission of the institution. The Filson is a 133-year-old independent research archive and museum with a staff of twenty focusing on the history of Kentucky and the Ohio River Valley. The successful candidate will produce immediate results in fundraising and business partnership development. Working with an effective membership coordinator, the manager will increase membership numbers, generate community attachment to The Filson, and increase the number and profitability of space rentals and outside events.

Of the $2 million annual operating budget, approximately 50% is raised through membership, development, and sponsorships. Development assets include a strong annual giving program, a membership base of approximately 2,000, and special fundraising events. Future expectations include an increase in membership, donors, corporate partnerships, and a targeted endowment campaign to support the Jewish Community Archive.

Under the general supervision of the Vice President and in cooperation with the Development Committee, the Manager of Development and Membership is responsible for all fundraising and associated community relations, donor cultivation, and benefits fulfillment. These include but are not necessarily limited to conducting an annual appeal, soliciting sponsorships, grants, and in-kind contributions, management of fundraising events, and big picture management of membership. Responsible for ensuring sound marketing and communication practices with respect to fundraising.

Requirements include proven fundraising experience and a demonstrated ability in fundraising and marketing, a general acquaintance with the region, an ability and the creativity to develop marketing materials and campaigns, ability to effectively represent the organization in public, and excellent general professional skills. Bachelor's degree required.

Full job description can be found on our website HERE. Send cover letter and resume to Applications will be reviewed as they come in, with the first rounds of review being on December 4 and December 8.

Special Projects Coordinator

*This position is considered an administrative support position, full time with benefits.

Responsible for recruitment, training, coordination, and supervision of volunteer/docent functions and for coordinating details for rental events and assisting with rental inquiries. Provide support for all Filson programs including handling and reporting income related to event fees and sales. Other duties include special projects such as assisting the President and Vice President, supporting meetings, helping plan special events, administrative support of the Cultural Pass Program.

This position requires flexibility in scheduling to be available for some evening and weekend events and rentals.

Requirements: Experience providing administrative support and excellent internal customer service. Event and volunteer management experience desired. Bachelor’s Degree preferred.  Must possess excellent customer service skills, excellent technical and communication skills, and be able to multi-task.  Must demonstrate initiative and problem-solving ability.  Ability to lift objects weighing 15-25 pounds, valid driver’s license, and reliable transportation required.

To apply, submit resume with a cover letter to Marian Salmon, Chief of Business Operations, via email: by November 8, 2017.

Volunteers, Welcome to The Filson Historical Society!

Volunteering is a great way to learn more about history while helping to preserve the past for the enjoyment of future generations.  Meeting new people, learning and sharing information, and making a real contribution to The Filson are just a few of the benefits volunteers can receive for their time and effort.

At The Filson Historical Society, volunteers provide connections to the past and insights into the present.  Volunteers provide personal attention to visitors, perform behind-the-scenes assistance to our Library and Collections, and work with the public in education and programming events … all by contributing their unique talents, skills and life experiences, and their knowledge about our community, our commonwealth and the Ohio Valley region.

The Filson Historical Society is committed to encouraging volunteer involvement at all levels in the organization. Please see our current volunteer opportunities below:

Volunteer Opportunities at The Filson

Front Desk Volunteer

The Filson Historical Society is seeking volunteers to welcome guests and researchers to The Filson. Volunteers will assist The Filson by:

  • Welcoming and directing Filson visitors
  • Registering researchers and collecting research fees
  • Answering the phone and directing calls
  • Registering people for events using SimpleTix, our online event registration platform
  • Helping Filson staff with other activities


The Filson is seeking volunteer docents to give tours of the exhibits and the historic Ferguson Mansion. Initial and ongoing training for docents will be provided.

If you have the following attributes, you should consider becoming a docent:

  • A passion for connecting the public to local history
  • Great public speaking skills
  • Interest in local history and art
  • Punctual and reliable

It’s an exciting time at The Filson—join us!

For more information regarding volunteer opportunities, please contact Julie Scoskie at 502.635.5083 or email