Missouri History Museum
  • 16-Aug-2023 to Until Filled (CST)
  • Exhibitions
  • St. Louis, MO, USA
  • 24.50 per hour
  • Hourly
  • Full Time


The Missouri Historical Society commits to a process of listening attentively to one another and leveraging best practices and resources across our organization to promote a culture of inclusion where individuals from all racial and ethnic identities; ages; nationalities; social and economic statuses; sexual orientations; gender identities/expressions; religious, political, and ideological perspectives; and abilities are able to be engaged, feel valued, and thrive. click here for the full Commitment to Racial Equity

Position Summary:

One of the leading historical societies in the country, the Missouri Historical Society is in the midst of a transformative decade with exciting exhibit projects under development and on the horizon. We believe public history has the power to build stronger communities and first-class exhibits are an essential part of that work. In the years ahead, we will be expanding our efforts to share more history with more people than we ever have before.

Founded in 1866, the Missouri Historical Society operates three locations - the Missouri History Museum, Soldiers Memorial Military Museum, and the Library and Research Center. Together our locations serve as the confluence of historical perspectives and contemporary issues to inspire and engage audiences in the St. Louis region and beyond. We do that by telling local stories that focus on the history of this region and its people. This approach has led to the best attended and most awarded exhibits in MHS history.

The Exhibitions Preparator will assist in continuing to expand how we connect visitors to their shared past and to one another. We seek an experienced, creative, detail-oriented, and teamwork-oriented supervisor to help facilitate exhibit development on our biggest projects which serve our largest audiences, ranging from short-term temporary exhibits to a series of landmark signature gallery projects planned for the next five years.

The Exhibitions Preparator will service exhibits at all MHS locations including the Missouri History Museum, Soldiers Memorial Military Museum, and Library and Research Center. It is expected that the Preparator will spend 25% of the year at Soldiers Memorial Military Museum conducting exhibit maintenance and assisting with the gallery turnover of exhibits. In addition, The Exhibitions Preparator will supervise and schedule a crew of Temporary Preparators hired to assist with all aspects of exhibit fabrication and installation.

The Exhibitions Preparator is expected to closely collaborate with all members of the Exhibitions Department, as well as the Exhibitions Registrar, Lighting Technician, Soldiers Memorial Military Museum staff, and other MHS staff as necessary.


  • Hires, schedules, and supervises the Temporary Preparator crew.
    • Responsible for recruiting and retaining a substantial and qualified crew to assist in all aspects of exhibit fabrication and installation.
    • Responsible for all communications with Temporary Preparators about changes in policy or procedure.
    • Assists in setting annual salary expenditures for the crew and ensures costs are not exceeded based on project needs for the year.
    • Oversees timecards for all Temporary Preparators and ensures that timecard procedures are adhered to, including proper project coding, etc.
    • Creates and manages schedules and calendars based on project needs and staff availability. Coordinates with the Exhibitions Mount Maker and Exhibitions Carpenter on staffing needs related to fabrication or mount making.
    • Facilitates training sessions for the Temporary Preparator crew on all aspects of preparator work including fabrication and installation techniques.
    • Expected to work alongside Temporary Preparators on all projects and to be knowledgeable of progress made daily.
    • Facilitates large install team meetings with Exhibition Designers a head of gallery turnover to ensure Temporary Preparators are knowledgeable about the upcoming install.
  • Perform all project management duties associated with gallery turnover and maintenance.
    • Coordinates with Exhibition Designers and Exhibition Specialist to ensure necessary costs do not exceed allocations based on project needs.
    • Coordinates all equipment rentals necessary for the install or deinstall of exhibit elements including trucks, forklifts, LEED certified dumpsters, etc.
    • Maintains the proper inventory, storage and care of installation equipment and supplies.
    • Ensures all necessary installation supplies and hardware are ordered and onsite in time for gallery turnover.
  • Reviews all design packages as distributed by Exhibition Designers and offers feedback as necessary. Specifically, reviews in detail all installation packages for a thorough understanding of Designers expectations before gallery turnover begins.
  • Co-leads gallery turnovers at MHM alongside the Exhibition Designer, Exhibition Registrar, and Exhibitions Carpenter. Coordinates with the Exhibitions Carpenter on the division of leadership on a case-by-case basis.
  • Co-leads gallery turnovers at SMMM alongside the Exhibition Designer and Collections Manager.
  • Leads the installation of small or community projects at MHS and off-site locations. Coordinates with the Exhibitions Specialist on project specifications.
  • Collaborates with Exhibition Designers on the prototyping and fabrication of interactives.
  • Assists the Exhibitions Carpenter with fabrication of exhibit elements as necessary.
  • Performs regular gallery maintenance at all MHS locations as necessary.
  • Attends all large exhibit team meetings as schedules allow.
  • Performs regular gallery walkthroughs as part of a larger team tasked with ensuring the safety and quality of our visitor experiences.
  • Coordinates the transfer of exhibit elements to and from offsite storage sites and other MHS locations.
  • Assists in maintaining offsite storage sites which includes organizing and inventorying exhibit elements, etc.
  • Ensures a safe working environment for all using the finishing space or prep spaces at SMMM. This includes ensuring all tools and safety equipment are in good working condition and undergo regular maintenance assessments as necessary.
  • Research emerging best practices regarding fabrication and installation materials and products.
  • All other duties as necessary.


  • A high school diploma or equivalent is required; Associate degree in construction management or a related field is
  • Minimum 3 years of museum level exhibition installation experience, preferably in a nonprofit museum and/or equivalent public sector.
  • Minimum 2 years of supervisory experience, preferably in a nonprofit museum and/or equivalent public sector.


  • Dependable, reliable, and self-sufficient.
  • Excellent leadership and supervisory skills.
  • Excellent time and project management skills.
  • Excellent organizational, administrative, and communication skills.
  • Advanced exhibit installation experience.
  • Moderate to advanced art or artifact handling experience.
  • Moderate to advanced understanding of exhibit designs and/or fabrication plans.
  • Moderate experience with general fabrication techniques.
  • Moderate experience using lifting tools or machinery preferred.
  • Ability to juggle many simultaneous tasks as well as to delegate tasks effectively.
  • Ability to adapt or learn new skills through creative problem solving to accomplish complex physical projects.
  • Ability to routinely handle objects of up to 50 pounds or more.

Deadline to Apply: Open until filled.

Please upload cover letter and resume when applying.

*External job boards: Please click this link, to apply.

An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer

Services Provided On A Non-Discriminatory Basis

Missouri History Museum
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