Historic House Museums

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The Historic House Museum Community

Historic houses are among the most numerous museums in the country and AASLH consistently develops services to meet the needs of historic house museum professionals. AASLH maintains numerous resources for historic house museums and prides itself on having the largest number of historic house museums as members than any other professional museum organization.

Since the 1960s, historic house museums have become a collected presence in America’s cultural landscape. Yet it seems every week a new one opens and another closes its doors for good. What can be done to forestall the decline in historic house museums in peril and outline a path back to a healthy and vigorous future?

The mission of AASLH’s Historic House Museum Committee is to provide advice and direction for the development of programs and services that benefit historic house museums in the United States; and to ensure that AASLH’s programs and services for these organizations are high quality, address identified needs of the membership, and reflect current issues and thinking in the field.


The Historic House Museum Community is governed by the following committee:

Joshua Campbell Torrance, Chair (2018-2020)
Woodlawn Museum, Ellsworth, ME

Carey Beam (2018-2020)
Wylie House Museum, Bloomington, IN

Kelsey Brow (2019-2021)
King Manor Museum, Jamaica, NY

Andy Hahn (2018-2020)
Campbell House Museum, St. Louis, MO

Kelly Klobucher (2017-2019)
Hegeler Carus Foundation, La Salle, IL

Brett Lobello (2018-2020)
Brucemore Estate, Cedar Rapids, IA

Diane Rogness (2015-2019)
State Historical Society of North Dakota, Bismarck, ND

Sean Sawyer (2018-2020)
The Olana Partnership, Hudson, NY

Jessica Stavros (2018-2020)
Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites, Indianapolis, IN

Gennie Truelock (2017-2019)
Workman & Temple Family Homestead Museum, City of Industry, CA

Jessica VanLanduyt (2015-2019)
Atlanta History Center, Atlanta, GA

Jessica Welch (2019-2020)
Manoa Heritage Center, Honolulu, HI

Jamie Wilms (2017-2019)
Molly Brown House Museum, Denver, CO

Lisa Worley (2018-2020)
Historic Ford Estates, Grosse Pointe Shores, MI

AASLH Staff Contact
Bethany Hawkins

Historic House Museum Resources

Keep up with historic house museum blogs on the AASLH blog.

Browse historic house museum resources in the AASLH Resource Center.

Join the Community.

Recent historic house museum publications from AASLH:

The Care and Display of Historic Clothing
By Karen M. DePauw

Registration Methods for the Small Museum (5th ed.)
By Daniel B. Reibel, revised by Deborah Rose Van Horn

Landscapes and Gardens for Historic Buildings (3rd ed.)
By Rudy J. Favretti and Joy Putman Favretti

Interpreting Agriculture at Museums and Historic Sites
By Debra A. Reid

Interpreting Food at Museums and Historic Sites
By Michelle Moon

Environmental Sustainability at Museums and Historic Sites
By Sarah Sutton

Preventive Conservation for Historic House Museums
By Jane Merritt and Julie A. Reilly

New Solutions for House Museums: Ensuring the Long-Term Preservation of America’s Historic Houses
By Donna Ann Harris

How to Join AASLH Affinity Communities

Can I join an AASLH affinity community using my current account?

Everyone will need an individual AASLH account to join one of the communities. This includes active AASLH individual members, those who have staff accounts at active institutional members, academic student and faculty accounts at active Academic programs, and even nonmember accounts.

Institutional members, including partners, must create staff profiles for their employees, volunteers, and board members if you want them to be able to join and participate in AASLH communities. There is no charge for creating staff profiles and no cap on how many staff profiles can be attached to your institution.

Please refer to the Creating Staff Members Flyer for information on how to add these profiles http://download.aaslh.org/Creating+Staff+Profiles.pdf.

Academic Programs can refer to the Creating Faculty and Student Profiles Flyer to create profiles for people in their programs http://download.aaslh.org/Creating+Faculty+and+Student+Profiles.pdf.

Lapsed AASLH members or people who have never had an AASLH account are welcome to create a nonmember account from the Membership Center page. There is no charge for creating a nonmember account.

Signing in to the AASLH Membership Center

To sign in to your individual account, go to https://aaslh.site-ym.com/login.aspx to login to the Membership Center. Links to reset your password or join AASLH are also available at that page. If you do not remember your username please email membership@aaslh.org.

Once logged in, choose the Communities tab to navigate to the community you would like to join. There is no limit to how many Affinity Communities you join. A community showing 0 registered members will still have members, this message appears because AASLH does not share members’ contact information with other members in the Membership Center.

To join the group, select Join Group at the top of the page. You will then be able to participate in the forum discussions. Even if you do not plan on participating in the forums, we recommend you join the Community so you don’t miss out on important community announcements

Community Events

Historic House Calls
In 2013, the Community began Historic House Calls – which give staff and volunteers working in historic house museums the chance to hear from a leading expert on a topic related to historic sites and ask questions about that topic. The AASLH Historic House Affinity Group offers these quarterly at no charge for AASLH members. Check back often for upcoming House Calls and learn about previous ones.

Historic House Museums Issues and Operations Workshop
AASLH conducts a professional development workshop geared specifically to historic house museums. The Historic House Museums Issues and Operations workshop provides hands-on, practical information for new directors, dedicated volunteers, board members, and staff at historic houses.

AASLH Annual Meeting Affinity Breakfast or Luncheon
Each year the AASLH Annual Meeting includes numerous sessions that focus on the unique challenges present in historic house museums. And, the Historic House Affinity Breakfast or Luncheon has provided the opportunity for professionals to network, as well as gain valuable information from the field on current trends, best practices, and pressing issues in historic house museums.