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Colonial Michilimackinac – American Indian Interpreter

Department: Museum Programs
Location: Colonial Michilimackinac, Mackinaw City
Start Date/End Date: Early May through early October
Pay Rate: Starting at $13/hr

Click here to fill out an application.

Scope of Duties:
Mackinac State Historic Parks (MSHP) seeks qualified individuals to serve as historic interpreters at Colonial Michilimackinac, a reconstructed 18th century fortified fur trading center in Mackinaw City, Michigan. This full-time seasonal position is responsible for interpreting the history of Native Americans at Michilimackinac during the 18th century.

1. Put visitors to Michilimackinac and other MSHP sites first by treating them with respect, serving their needs, and providing an enjoyable and educational experience.
2. Interpret the history of Native people visiting Michilimackinac for trade, diplomacy, and military purposes in the late 18th century.
3. Interpret and maintain the recreated summer encampment site, including seasonal lodges and other temporary structures.
4. Present formal and informal interpretative programs about the history and traditions of the Odawa and Ojibwa Indians, including their role in the Great Lakes fur trade, their relationship with Europeans, their technology, material culture, and foodways, and their social structures.
5. Wear and interpret recreated clothing and accouterments that reflect the appearance of Odawa or Ojibwa Indians in the 1770s.
6. Assist in the regular maintenance and care of chickens, gardens, the interpretive supplies, clothing, tools and equipment.
7. Participate in other regularly scheduled interpretive presentations and special events as required.

1. Must have an interest in historical interpretation and be dedicated to public engagement and education.
2. Must be outgoing, enthusiastic, self-motivated, and have strong public speaking skills.
3. Must have an interest in the interpretation of Native American traditions and history.
4. Membership in a federally-recognized upper Great Lakes Odawa or Ojibwa tribal band is strongly preferred, but is not a requirement of employment.
5. Experience with or interest in historic interpretation, historically appropriate cultural traditions such as quillwork, beadwork, leather work (including tanning), birchbark construction, stone and wood carving,  fish net-making, gardening, and cooking is recommended.
6. Must be able to work assigned position length. Position works 23 weeks, from early May through mid-October

Work Location and Schedule:
This is a full-time seasonal position, which typically works 40 hours per week for 23 weeks from early May through mid-October. The workstation for this position is Colonial Michilimackinac, although the employee may be required to work at other MSHP park sites. The position is primarily based outdoors at the recreated Native summer encampment at Michilimackinac. Work schedules are posted in advance and are subject to change depending on park operational needs. The employee may be asked to work evenings, holidays, and/or weekends as park needs dictate.

Physical Requirements
Stretching and bending are moves commonly made throughout the day by employees in this position. The employee must have the ability to do the following activities, with or without reasonable accommodation: frequent lifting, carrying, transporting, loading and unloading of up to 35 pounds, walking on rough terrain and walking long distances in all weather conditions, frequent twisting, bending, stooping, reaching and grasping, sitting, kneeling and/or standing for long periods of time. The employee will be required to wear a historic costume at all times while working indoors and outdoors in various weather conditions. This position will be exposed to extreme heat, cold and wind conditions working within historic buildings and outdoors around the site; employees must be able to work in this type of environment.

Dress Code:
The park maintains a dress code for employees in the public service to promote a productive and safe work environment and to maintain MSHP’s public image. This means no inappropriate hairstyles, jewelry, clothing or fashion statements are allowed. Employees are required to be in approved park costume at all times while on duty, which includes the wearing of proper footwear. The park will furnish the employee with the required costume items which must be returned at the end of seasonal employment. Violation of the dress code may result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.

The employee works under the direction of the Curator of Interpretation and the Chief Curator. This position does not supervise other employees. 

Due to the high volume of applications received, only those applicants invited to interview will be contacted.

Click here to fill out an application. 

Questions or cannot apply online?
Please contact:

P.O. Box 873
Mackinaw City, MI 49701
231-436-4100 x111