Historical Consultant

Help museums, Filmmakers, and other clients get historical facts straight.
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Quick Stats

Salary Range
$26,000 – $96,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Historical Consultants do?

A Historical Consultant is a traveling professional, swooping in to take over the tricky work of researching history. Businesses may not have the time, manpower, or skills to do that work alone. When you’re a Historical Consultant, they hire you.

You likely work as a freelance Historical Consultant, doing several small projects at once or tackling just one project per year. You set your own fees for your work, taking care to set your prices high enough to cover your costs.

The service you offer is valuable to many people and organizations, including museums, cities or counties, and Filmmakers. For a museum, you put together materials for a new exhibit. You may research the artwork that will be displayed, determining what the Artists looked like, where they lived, and what they did for a living. Your work may appear in small placards beside the artwork, or it may be printed in museum programs.

You may also work for a city or county that’s trying to get national funding for its historic buildings. In this role, you survey the buildings to determine when they were built and who built them. You then write up proposals detailing why those buildings are important and deserve federal protection.

For a Filmmaker who’s making a period film, you put together a report detailing what the characters should wear, what the sets should look like, and what props should be included. You also coach the Actors on how to use the props. Additionally, you supervise the filming, pointing out historical inaccuracies. This work might seem tedious, but rabid fans will appreciate your expertise and attention to detail, and the Director will be grateful for the reduction in hate mail that results.

Should I be a Historical Consultant?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Persistent: You keep pushing through, even when faced with tough obstacles.

  • How to become a Historical Consultant

    Most Historical Consultants have a Doctorate or a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:axat9y&chl=|certificate+%2818%25%29||bachelor%27s+%2815%25%29|master%27s+%2848%25%29|doctorate+%2819%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,48
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