Resources for Public Historians

The AHA has long been an advocate of public history and has regularly expressed a strong commitment to its practice. In 2001, the Council of the AHA created the Task Force on Public History, which submitted its final report to Council in January 2004. The report recommended that the Professional Division be responsible for ensuring continued progress on addressing the concerns of public historians. The AHA continues to partner with affiliates on initiatives of concern to public historians, as well as publish regularly on public history in Perspectives on History.

The Historical Profession


No More Plan B: A Very Modest Proposal for Graduate Programs in History by Anthony T. Grafton and Jim Grossman (October 2011)

Plan C by Anthony T. Grafton and Jim Grossman (November 2011)

Mapping the Contours of the History Profession: Three Perspectives by Jim Grossman (December 2011)

A Picture of Public History: Preliminary Results from the 2008 Survey of Public History Professionals by John Dichtl and Robert B. Townsend (September 2009)


Links to sites advertising public history positions and additional advice on finding a public history job

Looking for a Federal Job? Some Practical Advice (May 2006)

Practical Advice on Getting a Public History Job (April 2006)

Public History Employers-What Do They Want? A Report on the Survey (September 2003)

Sites with Related Information

The National Council on Public History (NCPH)
The NCPH strives to advance the role of public history within the historical profession and publishes the quarterly journal
The Public Historian in cooperation with the History Department of the University of California at Santa Barbara.

National Park Service
The NPS History Program is an excellent source of information for public historians.

National Register of Historic Places
Since its inception in 1966, nearly 73,000 properties have been listed in the National Register, and its vast database can be easily accessed through a research engine.

American Association for State and Local History
Through preservation and interpretation, the AASLH strives to give meaning to state and local history within American history. Its website offers research tools, job listings, and publications for its members.

The Society for the History in the Federal Government
Founded in 1979, the SHFG promotes the study and understanding of the history of the federal government and serves as its voice within American historical profession. The SHFG has an annual meeting and its website contains job listings for public historians interested in working within the federal government.

The Society of American Archivists
The SAA is North America's oldest and largest national archival professional association. It's website has an employment bulletin, periodicals, publications, and other information pertinent to those within the Archivist profession.

American Association of Museums (AAM)
The American Association of Museums is the national organization representing the museum community which strives to enhance the ability of museums to serve the public interest.

Smithsonian Institution
The Smithsonian website provides a wealth of information to historians wishing to work in the public sphere.