Old Sturbridge Village (OSV) is seeking a full-time fellow to work and study under the leadership of OSV’s Horticulture program for 12 months, starting in March 2023. As a living history site dedicated to the history of early 19th century rural New England, a major component of OSV’s mission is its commitment to showing horticulture and the importance of gardens in 19th century life. The fellowship follows the seasonality of the year. Working as a historic gardener will entail using all aspects of the Museum’s multiple gardens as educational tools to make meaningful connections with our visitors.
The Fellow will spend their tenure assisting the horticulture team with all tasks, including but not limited to:
19th Horticulture: Vegetable and Flower gardening
Techniques include: bed preparation, sowing seed, thinning, pest management, weeding, watering, harvesting, and seed saving (of both vegetables and flowers). This will involve both in costume and non-costume work using 19th century and modern techniques to steward the Village’s collection of heirloom plants.
Root cellaring and managing produce for preservation
Proper techniques for harvesting and hardening off of heirloom varieties of root vegetable, winter squash, and beans
Care of fruit trees: pruning
Assist in the harvest and storage of the Village’s fruit crops (mostly apples), as well as pruning and care of the Village’s Historic orchards
Seed ordering, packaging, and saving
Learn about modern ordering of seed, including reliable sources for heirloom seed, and how to plan for the coming season.
Assist in running the seed saving program in affiliation with Old Sturbridge Academy. With the help of students, seeds from the time period are grown and harvested as a means of stewarding our collection of rare and heirloom seed and providing product for the gift shop. This will be a year round activity as many of the seeds are ripe for harvest in the summer, but will not processed until the winter months.
At Old Sturbridge Village, a Historical Interpreter engages and educates our audience. They use historic clothing, structures, plants, animals and landscape as well as the tools and techniques of early trades, agriculture, horticulture and domestic crafts to make meaningful connections with the present. Fellows will be provided costumes by the OSV Historical Clothing Department.
The Paul Rogers Horticulture Fellow will focus on the two main elements of interpretation: educating/engaging our visitors and working towards mastery of historical horticulture practices/their relevance to modern applications. Working alongside museum professionals, this fellowship will provide hands-on learning working in our seven distinct gardens and numerous orchards. Throughout their fellowship, this individual will gain proficiency in both doing and teaching 19th century horticultural technique, while also learning about how horticulture has changed to fit the modern food system.
The Fellow will also have the opportunity to conduct a research project on a topic of their choosing in the area of horticulture. This project will be developed with assistance from and overseen by the Horticulture Coordinator. Resources from the horticulture team and access to the research library will be provided as needed. This project will culminate in the presentation of research through a lecture or creation of training materials.
All fellows will be provided general historical training in the museum’s time period and in the area(s) to which they will be assigned as well as in visitor engagement and customer service techniques. Fellows will also be provided mentors to help progress their skills and assess their development. This fellowship will be overseen by the Coordinator of Internships and Fellowships and Horticulture Coordinator.
Hours, Stipend & Application:
The workday is normally from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and the museum is usually open Wednesday – Sunday; winter hours may differ. The 40 hour/week work schedule varies based on needs at the organization.
The fellow will receive a stipend of $15,500. Stipends are based on a 40-hour a week and will be prorated if shorter hours or season are agreed upon. The position includes housing available at no cost (housing deposit is required). PTO & Sick time is accrued based on hours worked. No health or medical benefits are included.
Please submit a cover letter, resume, and two letters of reference to email@example.com. Please put “Horticulture Fellowship” and your last name into the subject line.