Volunteer Opportunities

Committee Members

It takes a lot of passionate people to run a place like the Ames Historical Society, and our small three person staff cannot do it all alone. We rely heavily on our volunteer committees to help us out. We are looking for community members who are interested in getting involved in some of our committees. We have many different committees including: Membership Committee (helping to increase and retain membership), Collections Committee (assisting with our physical collections), Hoggatt Committee (help us plan programs and events for our one room schoolhouse), Finance Committee (help us plan the budget), Development Committee (help us plan fundraising events and ideas to support the museum in the long term), Programs & Events Committee (an ad hoc committee that helps plan the year's programs and events). 

Youth and Community Outreach

As part of our mission we present programs to many classrooms of school aged children each year. We also do numerous public programs and go to many tabling events. We are looking for some volunteers who would be willing to assist us on an "as needed" basis for some of these events. Each event/program is different so duties may change based on that but they usually consist of assisting staff with set up and clean up, and then sitting with them through the event/program to answer questions or assist in any way. 

We are especially looking for people who would be interested in helping us with our school programs. They are given during the day either at our museum or in the classroom of the school. Usually a program is an hour long and we need assistance with keeping track of time, set up, clean up, and making sure transitions between breakouts go smoothly. If you have a passion for youth education please consider helping us out!

Clerical Work

We are looking for volunteers to help us out occasionally when we have some clerical work to do. One big project that we have that is ongoing is clipping out obituaries from the paper and filing them. At other times there are files that need to be filed or organized. This opportunity is a more "as-needed" one, so it would be great for someone who can only volunteer occasionally. 

Gallery Cleaning

 We are looking for individuals who would like to do some cleaning in our gallery space or offices. Times are flexible anytime between 9am-5pm Monday-Friday and 10am-4pm on Saturdays. Duties are also flexible. If you would prefer to only do some dusting, windexing and vacuuming, that's great. Any bit helps. If you are willing to do more like take out trash and clean bathrooms that is also great.  We have about 15-20 hours a week of cleaning we are hoping to fill. Help us keep our little museum clean!

Front Desk Host

The front desk volunteer is in charge of meeting and greeting patrons,answering the phone, and assisting with patrons' needs including but not limited to: donations, research, and brief tours.
Available shifts include:
Tues 3-5pm
Wed 1-3pm or 3-5pm
Thur 1-3pm or 3-5pm

Inventory and Indexing

We have a few ongoing needs which include assisting us in indexing our building plan collection and parts of our media collection. The process is simple and includes going through and writing down information and location of things and then possibly entering them into an Excel document if you are comfortable with that. 

Artifact Inventory

We are looking for volunteers to help us with a large inventory of all of our historic artifact collections. Volunteers will assist the Collections Manager in inventory, photo taking, organizing, and light paperwork. Volunteers will be fully trained on proper museum handling and procedures. 

This is a fun and interesting opportunity for all ages, but would be great for individuals or students interested in museum work. Volunteers can work on this project anytime from 9am-5pm Mondays thru Saturdays.

Archival Sorting

As part of our mission we collect and preserve aspects of current Ames events, happenings, organizations, etc. in order to save them for future generations. Part of doing that includes sorting materials into proper categories and filing them into the archives. Volunteers will be trained on proper archival handling, and on everything else you need to know about the project.

Volunteers can work between the hours of 9am-5pm Monday thru Saturday. 


We are looking for volunteers to help us with a very large and ongoing historical photo digitization project. No prior experience is necessary; we will train volunteers on all aspects of the project. 

Historical Research

We are currently working on a large Main Street Legacy project which includes researching all the businesses that have been located on Main Street from 1864 to 2015. We are looking for volunteers to assist with this research by searching through old newspapers online and helping us find listings for Ames businesses.

Contact Us to Volunteer!

Current volunteers