Become a Historical Society Volunteer
Volunteers are the heart and soul of the St. Croix County Historical Society. Since its creation in 1948, several generations of volunteers have pitched in to make the Octagon House Museum a lasting historic treasure in Hudson. Your support is needed help us continue our mission of preserving our past for future generations.
Volunteer opportunities are many and varied. Volunteers of all ages (from 12 to 100) are welcome. All levels of talents and abilities are needed and appreciated. Training is provided and new input and ideas are valued.
If you are interested in history and are available for as little as two hours a month please consider volunteering. If you have more time to volunteer, consider serving on one of the many committees that work to keep history alive and the Historical Society a vital and active part of the community.
Please complete the Volunteer Application and let us know you are interested in joining our team of volunteers.
For more information, please contact our Museum Director Kim Bennewitz
New Volunteer Open House
The St. Croix County Historical Society will host a Volunteer Open House at the Octagon House Museum at 1004 Third Street, on Saturday, February 10, from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. If you have ever considered volunteering at the Octagon House Museum, please stop by the Open House to learn about the wide variety of volunteer opportunities at the Historical Society.
Your help is needed! The Octagon House Museum seeks volunteers to share their time and talents. No mater what your interest or skills, there is likely an area where you can help. At the volunteer open house, you can learn about the many volunteer opportunities, the various committees and have a look of the museum.
Volunteers of all ages are welcome. Volunteering is also a great away to meet new people and learn new skills. Training is provided and you need not be a history buff to lend a helping hand.
If you are interested in volunteering or have questions, please contact Kim Bennewitz at 651-324-4075 or the Octagon House Museum at 715-386-2654 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities
Reception Desk & Cashiers:
Volunteers are needed to greet guests, record visitors in our daily log and receive payments for tours and gift shop merchandise. Reception volunteers are needed April-September and December during regular tour hours. Additional cashiers are needed in the gift shop during special events.
Are you interested in sharing history with our guests? Guides are given individualized training and learn all about this unique house, the Moffat-Hughes family and our annual theme. Tour guides are needed April-September and December and can vary from volunteering once a month to once or twice a week, depending on your availability. Maybe a full time guiding is too much, consider guiding for group tours where you are stationed in just one room.
Volunteer students, age 12 and older, are needed. The Junior Guides play and important role by relieving in for our regular guides over the summer months. This is a great way for students to earn community service hours, learn some local history, as well as improve their public speaking skills.
Spring Museum Decorating:
Volunteers are need on the House Committee to help with setup of the Museum’s Spring theme. The House Committee starts meeting in March to plan implementation of the new Museum décor theme and work with “Garret Gang” volunteers to pull artifacts. Museum setup is done in late March and April.
Volunteers are need on the House Committee to help with Christmas decorating. If you love Christmas and have a flair for decorating this is the volunteer position for you, although volunteers who can climb ladders, move boxes and hang decorations are need too. The House Committee starts meeting in mid-September to plan and decorating is done during the first few weeks in November.
Textile Management & Dresser:
If you love fashion here is an opportunity to work with our extensive clothing collection, from the Civil War era, to flapper era and beyond. Volunteers assist with textile cataloguing, photographing, storage and repair, as well as dress mannequins for the new tour themes in April and in November.
Do you like to sew? How about sewing a costume for one of our guides or actors? Additionally, there are several costumes that need mending and repair.
volunteers work in the garden weeding, deadheading and some spring planting. They work on a weekly basis from April to September, usually Mondays, but once trained volunteers can work when available.
Maintenance & Repairs:
Volunteers are needed for the Maintenance Committee to assist our caretakers with minor repairs and upkeep of the museum complex.
As you can imagine there is always something that needs to be cleaned. While we have a regular cleaning crew, there are often big projects like the floors or tackling the cobwebs in the Garden House. Much of this cleaning is done in the off season, January to March and some in November.
Volunteers are needed to manage artifacts. This includes data entry and cataloging using Past Perfect software, processing donations, photographing artifacts, artifact maintenance and storage. Much of this work is done by the “Garret Gang” on Mondays throughout the year, however, an addition work day can be added to accommodate new volunteers.
Volunteers are needed to scan and catalogue the Society’s photo collection. Volunteers also work with researchers to answer request for photos. Much of this work is done by the “Garret Gang” on Mondays throughout the year, however, an addition work day can be added to accommodate new volunteers.
If learning about local history appeals to you, consider volunteering as a researcher. Work year round with our research specialist to answer research request or assist other volunteers with research questions. Learn about area resource and how to use them to share local history.
Volunteers are needed for “Historian in the Classroom” to make classroom visits and presentations to students. Volunteers also to work with or research team and area teachers to develop historic educational curriculum.
Writing, editing, graphic design – can you share your skills. We need help with the Historical Society’s newsletter, The Bulletin, which is distributed in May and October.
Volunteers with Facebook, Twitter, and other social media are needed to create contend and monitor sites. Writes/bloggers are needed to research and write historic articles. Volunteers with web experience (or tech savvy and willing to learn) are needed to maintain the website.
Volunteers are needed on the Publicity Committee to write and distribute 15 -20 press releases per year that publicize Society events and/or request volunteers. In addition to monthly committee meetings, volunteers can work at home on their own to meet preset press deadlines.
Book and/or Video Publishing:
Consider joining the Publications Committee which works to produce historic books, movies and other publications for the Historical Society.
Are you a people person with organizing skills? Maybe you would be interested in helping as a volunteer coordinator. This is a year-long position that works closely with the Museum Director to keep track of and connected with all of our wonderful volunteers.
Special Event Volunteers
The tea crew works with Dorothy Wilson to prepare food, set tables, serve and cleanup for our Victorian Cream Teas. The teas are held for tour groups of 25 people or more on weekdays in the Spring and Summer. The teas a great fundraiser for the Society and there are usually anywhere from 1 to 5 teas per year.
City Tour Guides:
Volunteers are needed to present City Tours and Special Walking Tours. The City Tours are conducted for tour groups on their tour bus. Occasionally Special Walking Tours are held in Hudson’s downtown business district, on historic Third Street and Hudson’s residential area. Guides receive individual training.
Held on the second Saturday in June, volunteer actors and singers are need for this annual event. Casting for this event is done prior to May so actors have time to learn their parts. The choir begin practice in May. Volunteers are also needed to research and write scripts for the new historic spirits parts that are added to the program each year. Scripts must be completed before May.
8th Grade History Tour:
Held annual in early October, this is one of the Society’s largest volunteer events. In the morning several volunteer script readers are need stationed outside historic Hudson homes. Afternoon volunteers read scripts for the Second Street Business Tour or to volunteer at one of the History Booths in Lakefront Park. This great event allows 8th grade students to have an up close, hands on, experience with local history, however it takes many volunteers to make it happen.
Do you have a history related hobby or activity that you would like to share? Demonstrators are need for the annual Family Fun Night at the Museum (August), the History Booths at the 8th Grade History Tour (October) or at other special events throughout the year.
Christmas Tour of Homes:
Volunteers are stationed in each room to supervise guests as the tour the museum during the annual Tour of Homes on the weekend before Thanksgiving.
Victorian Christmas Night:
Guides are stationed in each room to share information about the room with guests. This event is in the evening on the first Friday in December.
Intern positions also available. LEARN MORE...
Message from our Museum Director
The St. Croix County Historical Society and the Octagon House Museum are looking for volunteers! Lending a hand not only fosters community well-being, but is sure to be a rewarding experience. We are seeking a variety of individuals to help us make a difference! We’re looking for volunteers of all ages and interests. Meet new friends, get involved and have fun volunteering with us.
Do you have a talent you would like to share with us? Perhaps you may be able to earn credits for a class or fulfill service hour requirements. We can find volunteer placements that will suit your skills and interests that fit into your busy schedules. You don’t need to be a history buff. We welcome any amount of time you can give. There are many ways you can lend a hand. Here are just a few of the areas we are currently looking for volunteers.