Why Volunteer?

Volunteers assist the Society by working at its Boston location or from home. In Boston, there are a variety of library-based activities, such as welcoming visitors, assisting them in locating materials and navigating online databases, or answering basic reference questions. The Publications team seeks volunteers with proofreading, indexing, and source-checking skills. NEHGS is continually adding to its digital collections, so volunteers are needed to scan and transcribe handwritten records.

For those with a basic knowledge of Excel spreadsheets, volunteers can help to create new database indexes or update website content. Some database projects can be done from home.

Please consider joining the growing cadre of volunteers. We promise you will enjoy the experience, and the time you contribute helps to enrich the NEHGS experience for others! For more information on the volunteer program, contact Helen Herzer by email at hherzer@nehgs.org or by phone 617-226-1276.

Volunteer Opportunities

Library Patron Services

ATTN: Library Director
The library needs friendly, welcoming volunteers to greet visitors and orient them within the building. If familiar with certain subject areas, volunteers can apprentice with staff genealogists to assist with research questions. Volunteers who have experience with online databases or the NEHGS microtext collection can help patrons get started with their research. This opportunity is best suited for volunteers who can donate time on a regular basis, generally once a week.

Library Technical Services

ATTN: Technical Services Manager
Volunteers with computer skills are needed to help with a variety of cataloging and data entry tasks. Processing of new books is a regular task. Help is also needed with inventory and retrieval of books and journals from the library stacks. Certain tasks require some bending and lifting. For volunteers with a background in bookbinding, the conservation department is always in need of those with hand skills in repairing books and manuscripts.


ATTN: Publishing Director
Seeking volunteers who have proofreading, indexing, source-checking, book layout/design, or organizational skills to assist with NEHGS book publication projects. Here is your chance to take part in creating valuable new resources for the genealogical field.


ATTN: Website
Volunteers work both onsite and from home with staff contact and instruction. Projects include transcribing manuscripts, proofing and editing, as well as extracting information from documents to place in spreadsheets. This is a great, “hands-on” way to learn the process of transferring printed material to the Internet! NEHGS staff will provide training; however volunteers must have basic computer skills. All opportunities require working knowledge of the Excel spreadsheet program.