Volunteer at MDAH
Be a Part of History!
Volunteer at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History
Our volunteers partner with MDAH employees to enrich the visitor-client experience and provide services vital to the operation of the department.
MDAH volunteers serve in all five divisions of our agency. They can be found doing important work in the:
- Administration Division on special projects such as the Museum of Mississippi History and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. The museums are slated to open for our state’s bicentennial celebration in 2017.
- Archives and Records Services Division, which boasts one of the premiere state archives libraries in the nation. Volunteers assist patrons in the Archives Library and in behind-the-scenes roles.
- Historic Preservation Division serving at the Mississippi State Capitol as volunteer guides and information desk volunteers. Volunteers also provide support to our professional archaeologists, architectural historians, and other preservationists.
- Historic Properties Division assisting the staff at Grand Village of the Natchez Indians, Historic Jefferson College, and Winterville Mounds.
- Museum Division sharing our rich history with the public. These sites include the Old Capitol Museum, the Governor’s Mansion, and the Eudora Welty House. The Manship House will reopen in the near future and volunteers will be an important component of this museum. Volunteers also work behind the scenes to help care for museum collections and create and implement educational resources and programs.
- Virtual community. eVolunteers help to preserve our history for generations to come. They transcribe oral history interviews and translate historical journals so that this important part of the Mississippi story will not be lost.
Our diverse, knowledgeable, talented, and skilled volunteers help fulfill our mission to collect, preserve, protect, research, and interpret the state’s rich and diverse historic resources and to promote the appreciation and use of those resources.
Active volunteers are included in a variety of volunteer enrichment and recognition activities.
To get started:
Download the MDAH Volunteer Application (PDF).
Completed applications should be sent to Elizabeth Coleman by email at email@example.com or by mail to the address listed on the application. For further information call Volunteer Services at 601–576–6985.
Download the MDAH Volunteer Handbook (PDF).
Read our current MDAH Volunteer Newsletter (PDF).
To View MDAH Volunteer Opportunities:
To access our current volunteer opportunities, visit Volunteer Mississippi at https://volunteer.truist.com/mcfvs/volunteer/search.aspx
Use the letters MDAH as the keyword.
You may also visit VolunteerMatch at www.volunteermatch.org
Look for the Find Opportunities box and type in the word History to see our current listings.
Where Volunteers Serve:
The Administration Division provides support services to all operations within MDAH. Volunteers serve in several areas of Administration in virtual and direct service roles. Our eVolunteers help to transcribe important interviews and translate historical documents. Direct service volunteers assist with events and special projects relating to the Museum of Mississippi History and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum.
Archives and Records Services Division
The Archives and Records Services Division oversees the state archives, where documents, photographs, and other items from the collection are made available to the public free of charge. Historians and librarians assist patrons with research on the political, military, religious, social, economic, and cultural history of the state. Volunteers assist staff in maintaining and providing access to the collection, which spans the days of prehistory and Native Americans to the Civil War, the Civil Rights era, and beyond.
Volunteers serve in Reference Services, Government Records, Electronic Archives, Paper Archives, Image and Sound, and Published Information sections.
Historic Preservation Division
Archaeology and Historic Sites, Architectural History, and Technical Preservation Services
Volunteers serve in the Archaeological and Historic Sites section as collections and reference services volunteers. Additionally, volunteers help with excavation projects under the supervision of professional archaeologists.
The Architectural History, Technical Preservation Services, and Administration areas of this division also have volunteers assisting with special projects to further MDAH’s preservation efforts of historic sites within Mississippi.
Mississippi State Capitol
Built in 1903 by Theodore C. Link of St. Louis Missouri, Mississippi’s capitol is one of the most architecturally significant buildings in the state. This Beaux Arts style marvel is the site of important meetings and events. It is 242,500 square feet, with a central dome that rises to 180 feet. Guided tours are available to the public on Mondays— Fridays at 9:30 and 11 a.m. and 1 and 2:30 p.m.
Volunteers serve as guides and hospitality attendants (information desk).
Historic Properties Division
Grand Village of the Natchez Indians
The Grand Village of the Natchez Indians was the main ceremonial center of the Natchez Indians from 1682 until 1729. The 128-acre site features a plaza and three mounds, a reconstructed Natchez Indian house, a nature trail, and museum. The annual Natchez Powwow features traditional Native American dancing, foods, and crafts.
Volunteers at the Grand Village serve as volunteer demonstrators, docents, period-dress interpreters, special events workers, and interpreters.
Historic Jefferson College
Historic Jefferson College in Washington, Mississippi, was incorporated in 1802, making it the first institution of higher learning in Mississippi. Visitors can tour the restored West Wing, the kitchen buildings, Prospere Hall—where interpretive exhibitions, a gift shop, and rest rooms are located—and the T.J. Foster Nature Trail. Popular annual events include the Copper Magnolia Festival in the fall, a Civil War re-enactment, vintage baseball games, and the Children's Victorian Christmas Celebration.
Volunteers at Historic Jefferson Collegeserve as volunteer demonstrators, docents, period-dress interpreters, special events workers, and interpreters.
Winterville Mounds, located outside Greenville, is the site of a prehistoric ceremonial center built by a Native American civilization that thrived from about A.D. 1000 to 1450. The mounds, part of the Winterville society's religious system, were the site of sacred structures and ceremonies. The 42-acre site features eleven mounds, dual plazas, and a museum. Winterville Mounds is the site of year-round popular events, including the annual Native American Days.
Volunteers at Winterville Mounds serve as volunteer demonstrators, docents, first-person interpreters, special events workers, and interpreters.
The Museum Division administration serves as support to the various MDAH museum sites. Here, volunteers conduct tours, provide care for the museum collections, and create and implement educational resources and programs.
Eudora Welty House
The Eudora Welty House in Jackson interprets the life and work of the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer. The museum works to foster a love of reading and literature, an appreciation of the arts, and inspire the creative endeavors of future artists and writers.
Volunteers serve as guides and gardeners at this site.
Old Capitol Museum
The circa-1839 Old Capitol Museum is the most historic building in the state and the oldest building in downtown Jackson. The museum interprets the distinguished history of the building and the events that have taken place in it. Interactive multimedia exhibits explore the roles of the legislature, governor, and high court, as well as the importance of historic preservation to the state, the activities that took place in the building after the New Capitol was constructed in 1903, and much more.
Volunteers serve as hosts, guides, first-person interpreters, translators, and special events volunteers.
First occupied in 1842, the Mississippi Governor's Mansion is the second oldest continuously occupied governor’s residence in the United States. Individuals interested in becoming docents may contact the mansion curator Lauren Miller at 601-359-6421 for more information.
Volunteers serve as docents at the Mansion.
Manship House Museum
This site is closed for foundation repair. The Manship House Museum is an 1857 Gothic Revival cottage villa once occupied by the Charles Henry Manship family. A talented craftsman, Manship also served as mayor of Jackson during the Civil War.
Volunteers will be recruited to conduct guided tours, serve at the information desk, and assist at special events when the museum reopens.