Job Posting: Conservator, USS Monitor – The Mariners' Museum and Park (Newport News, VA)

Position Information
Title: Conservator, USS Monitor
Supervisor: Director, USS Monitor Center

The conservator will undertake the direct treatment and preventive conservation care of objects recovered for the wreck of the USS Monitor in consultation with the Senior Conservator and Director, USS Monitor Center. This individual will work closely with conservation staff and other museum personnel to conserve artifacts and to prepare them for exhibition and/or long-term storage.


  • Conduct examination, documentation, and artifact treatment within the Monitor collection following established conservation procedures, methodologies, and ethics.
  • When necessary, based on the conservation needs of an artifact, develop new conservation techniques and procedures in consultation with the Senior Conservator and/or Director, USS Monitor Center.
  • Maintain detailed before, during, and after treatment records including both written and photographic documentation.
  • Support preventative conservation methodology, initiate requests, implement solutions under established conservation guidelines, and make recommendations for resolving difficult or unusual problems.
  • Construct storage support systems for artifacts with special needs directly; otherwise provide instruction/oversight to the Monitor Conservation Technician.
  • Consult/work directly with the Senior Conservator, Director, USS Monitor Center, and Exhibit Design in the preparation of mounts/installation of artifacts within the museum’s galleries; this includes providing the requirements for lighting and environmental conditions. Also, provide recommendations on the ability for objects to travel outside the museum based on their condition post-treatment.
  • Assist in the maintenance/operation of laboratory equipment and facility, and participate in the ordering of supplies and additional equipment as required.
  • Promote the importance of conservation within the museum and in an outreach capacity whenever possible.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities:

  • Working knowledge of acceptable practices for conservation and maintenance of objects.
  • Working knowledge of the archaeological method and practices.
  • Continued professional development in the conservation field.
  • Familiarity with a wide variety of materials including metals and organics required; experience with objects from a marine environment.
  • Working knowledge of analytical equipment and methods, not limited to but including FT-IR, SEM, XRF, digital radiography, optical microscopy, chloride analysis, metals sample preparation, and film/digital photography.
  • Working knowledge of metal fabrication and welding preferred.
  • Working knowledge of Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop.
  • Organizational skills necessary for planning/organizing of professional seminars, lectures, workshops, and publications.
  • Development of educational materials/activities for public outreach.
  • Attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Familiarity with accepted practices for achieving and insuring safety in the laboratory.

Education, Licensure, Certifications:
A Master’s degree (or equivalent) in conservation or related field is required.
Conditions of Employment:

A minimum of four years conservation experience is required, including work with marine archaeological materials.

Interested candidates must apply at