Museum Archivist Job Profile and Description

While the museum curator looks after exhibited artifacts, the Museum Archivists are responsible for ensuring the authenticity and preservation of historical and cultural documents. They can specialize in such areas as historic scientific papers and drawings, architectural blueprints of historic structures, medical manuscripts, war time and diplomatic treatises, political speeches, original book manuscripts, and personal letters of historical persons.

Museum Archivist Duties and Responsibilities

  • Classify and catalogue the archival assets of the museum
  • Coordinate with historians and fellow archivists in assessing the authenticity of newly included ancient or history documents in the museum’s collection
  • Mentor and manage new museum staff in the histories behind exhibited documents.
  • Source and acquire items to enrich museum’s archival collections.
  • Coordinate with the museum’s security in using the best technologies to secure and protect specific and overall museum archival collections.
  • Conduct lectures on new document finds and publish write-ups on them.
  • Coordinate with relevant experts in the restoration and preservation of delicate museum artifacts.
  • Conduct research work on newly discovered historic and cultural manuscripts in the museum’s collection.
  • Oversee production of museum promotional and informational literatures.

Museum Archivist Skills and Specifications

  • Mist have strong interpersonal, diplomatic and negotiation skills
  • Must have extensive and thorough knowledge in the specific curatorship assignment (natural history, martial artifacts, burial customs, etc.)
  • Must have strong communication skills
  • Excellent computer literacy in using museum database systems.

Museum Archivist Education and Qualifications

  • A BS degree in history, archeology or any of the social sciences is basic
  • A master’s degree in the antiquities is preferred
  • 5-7 years of experience in related archival discipline is an advantage


Museum Archivist Salary

The annual median salary of a Museum Archivist in 2008 stood at $45,100 with the middle 50% earning between $34,000 and $60,200. The bottom 10% earned nearly $26,600, and the top 10% earned about $76,800.