Wisconsin Maritime Museum Seeking Collections Manager/Registrar

Position Closed.

Job Title: Collections Manager/Registrar

Location: Manitowoc, WisconsinWMM Logo Small

 Closing Date: Until filled.

 Position: Full-time.  Competitive salary and benefits.

 Send applications to: Cathy Green, Deputy Director WMM cgreen@wisconsinmaritime.org  or call 920-684-0218 x120 for more information.

 Background:  The Collections Manager/Registrar at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum performs and manages essential museum-related collections and management tasks. As the State’s official maritime museum, the Wisconsin Maritime Museum cares for a collection of nearly 10,000 objects, including the WWII submarine USS Cobia. In addition, the collection includes 60,000 photographs, 7,000 books, 15,000 periodicals, 9,000 blueprints, and a large manuscript collection. It is one of the largest maritime collections on the Great Lakes and reflects the museum’s mission of documenting the role of Wisconsin in maritime history.

The Wisconsin Maritime Museum is between Milwaukee and Green Bay, in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, on the shores of Lake Michigan.  Photo WMM

Job Description: Responsible for the care, accessioning, cataloging, and general management of museum collections.  Assists the public and museum staff with research and the study of museum collections.  Assists the museum in formulating policy that effects collection management. Supports and implements the pan-institutional goal of increasing public access to, and relevance of, museum collections and curatorial research. Trains and manages collections volunteers. Reports to the WMM Deputy Director/Chief Curator.


  • Develops and implements policies and procedures that are in keeping with best professional practice for the registration, documentation, packing, handling, storage, care condition, display, and security of objects on loan to and in WMM collections.
  • Assists curatorial staff with provenance research as well as collections refinement and deaccession projects.
  • Manages all aspects of loans to and from WMM including—but not limited to—issuing loan agreements; making international, national, and local packing, crating, insurance, and shipping and courier arrangements; completing incoming and outgoing condition reports; entering loan and exhibition information into collections management database.
  • Conducts ongoing WMM database development and management, including recording locations, cataloging objects, updating record information, unifying lexicon, accessioning, deaccessioning, and inventory.
  • Monitors (in coordination with Building Facility Coordinator) environmental conditions and light levels in museum.
  • Maintains collection photo files and schedules/oversees new photography as needed.
  • Under the direction and oversight of the Chief Curator, processes paperwork for all new museum acquisitions, including gifts and purchases.
  • Assists with maintaining WMM AAM accreditation, including reaccreditation.
  • Coordinates bi-monthly Collection Committee meetings.
  • Assists in the research, planning, and installation of exhibits.
  • Routinely prepares thank you letters and other correspondence regarding donations, loans, and research
  • Manages the museum’s off-site collection storage facility.
  • Assists in searching for funds for collection management and research projects and contributes to collections management-related grant activities.
  • Ensures use of proper conservation and preservation methods for all items in the museum’s collections.
  • Ensures compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to collections and collecting activities.
  • Works with the Chief Curator and Museum Building Facility Coordinator to maintain, evaluate, and update disaster preparedness plan.
  • Contributes regular social media posts, website content, and to the museum’s quarterly journal, The Anchor.
  • Carries out internal and external research requests.
  • Recruits, trains and supervises volunteers and staff when they are working on collection and research related projects; maintains records on use of collection.
  • Represents the museum as a participant or speaker at public meetings or seminars.
  • Completes other tasks and duties as assigned from time to time.


  • A degree in library science, museum studies, archival management, or related humanities field; M.A. degree preferred.
  • Preferred minimum of the three years professional experience in museum or related field.
  • Understanding of the importance of cultivating donors, subject matter experts, and volunteers; ability to interact well with staff, volunteers, and public.
  • General knowledge of collection management and conservation procedures and methodology; including familiarity with PastPerfect collection and contact management software.
  • Working knowledge of archival research methods.
  • Displays initiative and self-direction.
  • Ability to organize and prioritize work and to supervise others.

Physical Demands:  Must be able to physically access all collections objects at several locations, including the interior of a World War II U.S. submarine; a warehouse racking system; and boat storage (basic bending, standing, sitting, climbing). Must be able to lift objects up to 20lbs.  Occasional exposure to dust and/or mold when assessing potential collections or during conservation efforts.



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