Archivist (Specialist III)

New York, NY
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Salary: $73,163
Created: June 22, 2023



The New York Public Library seeks a dynamic individual to enhance the use of its world class archival holdings at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and to serve as a resource and facilitator for public service access.


Founded in 1925 and named a National Historic Landmark in 2017, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is one of the world’s leading cultural institutions devoted to the collection, preservation, and interpretation of materials focused on African American, African, and African Diaspora experiences, featuring diverse programming and a collection of over 11 million items that illuminates the richness of global Black history and culture. A research library of The New York Public Library and seeded by the collection of Arturo Alfonso Schomburg nearly a century ago, the Schomburg Center provides free access to materials documenting Black life locally, nationally, and internationally.

The Archivist’s primary responsibility is to arrange and describe archival collections held in the Schomburg Center’s Manuscripts, Archives and Rare Books (MARB) Division, including the Institute of the Black World records and the Miriam Jimenez Roman papers among others. For more on the MARB Division, see

The arrangement and description of the collections will be supervised by Schomburg's Curator of the Manuscripts, Archives, and Rare Books Division. The New York Public Library’s Archival Processing Unit will oversee the training and implementation of the Library’s centralized processing protocols and systems.

This is a 3-year position funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for a grant titled “The Next Century of Black Studies''. The work of this grant will contribute immensely to the Schomburg Center’s centennial celebration in 2025 - 2026.



Reporting to the Curator of Manuscripts, Archives, and Rare Books, the Archivist will:

  • Arrange and describe archival collections of personal papers and organizational records, perform rehousing and other basic preservation needs, and create finding aids in accordance with local and national standards.
  • Perform original cataloging for special collections in accordance with local and national standards.
  • Participate in associated grant-related activities, including participation in The Future of Black Studies conference.
  • Provide reference and public services support for collections processed through the grant.
  • Perform related duties as required. 

Required Education, Experience & Skills

Required Education and Certifications 

  • ALA-accredited Master’s degree in library, archival or information studies or Master’s degree in liberal arts or humanities and successful completion of archival training. 
  • Subject area expertise or educational background in any of the following: African American History/Studies/Literature, Africana Studies, or cultural studies.

Required Experience

  • Minimum two years experience in an archives or manuscripts repository creating descriptive records for archival collections.
  • Successfully demonstrated professional experience required for the Specialist III level.

Required Skills 

  • A strong background in archival theory and practice, especially regarding arrangement and description, as well as a familiarity with current approaches to born-digital materials.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of current standards for archival description (APPM, DACS, LC subject headings, authority control, and MARC 21).
  • Demonstrated experience in original cataloging.
  • Experience in EAD markup.
  • Experience using ArchivesSpace or Archivists' Toolkit.
  • Working knowledge of historical research methodology and experience with standard bibliographic tools.
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills.
  • Successfully demonstrated initiative, accuracy, attention to detail, judgment, analytic and organizations.
  • Ability to work well independently and collaboratively in a production-oriented, team environment.


Core Values
All team members are expected and encouraged to embody the NYPL Core Values:

  • Be Helpful to patrons and colleagues
  • Be Resourceful in solving problems 
  • Be Curious in all aspects of your work
  • Be Welcoming and Inclusive

Work Environment

  • Core work will take place in the Schomburg Center but occasional travel within NYC may be necessary
  • Office setting
  • Public Research Library

Physical Duties

  • Daily use of a computer

Pre-Placement Physical Required?

Union/Non Union
Local 1930

FLSA Status

35 hours to be scheduled Monday-Friday. 

This job description represents the types and levels of responsibilities that will be required of the position and shall not be construed as a declaration of all of the specific duties and responsibilities for the role. Job duties may change if Library priorities change. Employees may be directed to perform job-related tasks other than those specifically presented in this description as needed.

About The New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at 


Published: Friday, June 23, 2023 19:35 UTC

Last updated: Friday, June 23, 2023 19:35 UTC