History Skills Workshops

register for a workshopThese training opportunities help historical organizations and interested history advocates gain skills that can be applied in museums, organizations, and personal collections.

  • Workshops are held from 9 a.m. to noon (unless noted) at the HSM Main Office at 5815 Executive Dr., Lansing, Michigan.
  • If you are a personal member of HSM or represent an organization that itself is a member of the Society, registration is $39.
  • Registration for non-members is $79 and includes a one-year HSM Individual Level 1 [Basic] membership.
  • Refreshments and materials are included with your registration. Lunch is on your own.

To register for a workshop, use our secure online registration form
or call (800) 692-1828.


June 3

Fund-raising to Friend-raising

by Chong-Anna Canfora, Historical Society of Michigan
The Historical Society of Michigan’s Director of Development, Chong-Anna Canfora, will discuss the fundamentals of raising money and teach attendees how to maximize results.

July 8

Fading Photos: How to Identify, Scan, Restore, and Archive Historic Photographs

by Robert Myers, Berrien County Historical Association
This workshop will assist small museums, historical societies, and interested collectors in identifying and preserving their historic photographs. The presenter will review basic conservation techniques for damaged images, type identification for early photographs, ways to avoid deterioration of images, storage recommendations, digital scanning for access, and how to approach cataloging issues. There will also be plenty of time for participants to ask questions and have hands-on experiences.

July 22

Museum Newbies—How do I…?

by Kim Parr, Crocker House Museum & Macomb County Historical Society
Are you new to the museum field and need advice or help with knowing how to do certain administrative functions? Perhaps you don’t quite know how to document gifts, or you have artifacts that do not fit into your collection. This open-formatted workshop will help answer some of your questions and help you learn how to network with others in your field. Please e-mail your pertinent questions at least two weeks before the workshop to hsm@hsmichigan.org, subject line: museum newbies.

August 12

Copyright Issues for Historic Collections

by Julia Frankosky and Megan Malone, Michigan State University Libraries
Unsure of how to protect your historic images online? Need help developing usage policies? These are just a couple of topics that will be explored in this informative presentation. Speaking from the perspective of historical collections, the two presenters will highlight the parts of copyright law that are especially important to small institutions.

August 26

Advanced Digitizing of Collections

by Ryan Edge and Matthew Wilcox, Michigan State University
This workshop has been developed for participants who have taken the basic digitization workshop or who are working with organizations already involved in digitization projects. Topics will include document and audiovisual reformatting standards, equipment, metadata, and sources.

September 16

How to Successfully Publish Your History Book

by Thomas Vranich, Bookability
All of the necessary steps in planning your book project will be covered in this workshop, including creating financial and production goals, what material to include, how to illustrate, defining your market, developing a work plan, and marketing the volume to the public.

October 7

Basic Archives

by Meghan Courtney, Wayne State University
Designed for small organizations that struggle with how to preserve and organize archival materials in their collections, this workshop will discuss proper storage and handling of collections, basic arrangement techniques, and affordable solutions for supplies and enclosures.

October 21

Advanced Archives

by Alexandra A. Orchard, Wayne State University
This workshop is designed for participants who have some experience working with archival materials and have already gained a basic understanding of archival principles. Participants will learn advanced skills in handling a variety of items and making them accessible. The speaker will provide details on arrangement and description methods of physical collections, from large to small, while touching on management and delivery of both physical and digital materials.

November 4

Taking Oral Histories One Step Further

by Dean Rehberger, Michigan State University MATRIX
Completing the interviews for an oral history project is a major accomplishment, but it is not the final step by any means. Participants of this workshop will understand the importance of properly cataloging and storing oral histories so that they can be accessible for future researchers. Organizations embarking on an oral history project, as well as those with boxes of old audio and video tapes, will want to attend this informative program.

November 18

Historic Books: How to Identify, Mend, Collect, and Care for Valuable Volumes

by Jay Platt, West Side Book Shop
Do you work with or collect old or collectible books? This workshop will discuss how to identify valuable volumes, care for and catalog books, and build a library. It will also cover storage considerations, basic mending techniques that are archival safe, and issues related to book collecting.

December 2

Exhibits on a Shoestring

by Tammy Barnes, Tibbits Opera House
What makes an exhibit communicate successfully, and how do museums present concepts so they are relevant and compelling to visitors? For those interested in expanding their knowledge beyond exhibit fabrication, the speaker will delve into exhibit research and the development of cohesive narratives using objects and images. Organizations with changing exhibit areas are especially encouraged to attend.

Refunds will not be issued for cancellations less than one week before each workshop. Your registration fee can be transferred to another workshop in the series within one year of the date of your original workshop registration.

History Skills Workshops Registration Form


Historical Society of Michigan 5815 Executive Drive Lansing, MI 48911
Email hsm@hsmichigan.org | Phone (517) 324-1828 | Fax (517) 324-4370

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