Living History Apprentice Program


Living History Apprentice (LHA)

Stuhr Museum is fortunate to have a large variety of volunteers who assist with programs and activities in every department. One unique group of volunteers is known as Living History Apprentices, or LHAs for short. Each year, youth who have completed the 5th grade or above may apply to join this group and take training classes to prepare them for their experiences at the museum.

The LHA program has been in existence in some form since 1982 when our youth volunteers were called “Junior Interpreters.” The program has grown and changed over the years to adapt to not only the needs of the museum, but also to cultivate the talents of each individual youth member and add new levels of leadership to help those youth become successful young adults in their schools, communities, and beyond.

More About Living History Apprentices

What do Living History Apprentices do at Stuhr Museum?

Living History Apprentices, or LHAs, assist in many ways throughout each year. LHAs are an important asset to our Summer Adventures program in June and July each summer, as they are the instructor’s helpers, assisting with everything from foodways to crafting and much more. LHAs may also volunteer as a Living Historian on a daily basis from May 1 through Labor day, where they will interpret life in the 1890s to visitors in Railroad Town. We also host several events and programs throughout the year where LHAs play essential roles, such as during our Independence Day celebration, Back to School, Harvest Fair, All Hallows’ Eve and Christmas Past & Present. LHAs may also have some behind-the-scenes opportunities, assisting with class preparations or some light office work.

How much time do LHAs have to volunteer?

While there is no minimum requirement of hours to be an LHA, those who complete 50 hours or more of volunteer service each year will be eligible for a special LHA celebration in the fall. Each LHA is responsible for recording their hours with us in order to be included in this event. LHAs are welcome to submit their hours for school volunteer requirements as well, and we refer to this record when signing paperwork.

How to get involved:

  1. Fill out an LHA application and return it to Stuhr Museum. Your application may be completed online, mailed, e-mailed or dropped off in person. The deadline for the applications for the current session will be March 20, 2021. Your application also needs to be accompanied by two reference forms filled out by two adults who are not related to you. Teachers, coaches, 4-H leaders, Scouts leaders, etc. are all good choices for this part!
  2. After the application period has ended, each applicant will be contacted to set up a short interview that will be conducted by two of our older LHAs. The interview is not meant to be intimidating, as it’s simply a way for us to get to know you as well as allow a leadership opportunity for both you and the older LHAs involved.
  3. After all interviews have been completed, each applicant will be notified of their acceptance status. We typically are able to accept between 12 and 15 applicants each year. Applicants accepted into the program will need to pay a $65 training fee to cover training costs, a t-shirt, and haversack.
  4. Applicants who are selected to become LHAs will need to complete a training program that is held on two mandatory Saturdays in April and/or early May each year. Additional optional trainings sessions may be offered during the year.
  5. After completing training, new LHAs are able to sign up to help with classes, volunteer in Railroad Town, assist during events, and begin attending monthly LHA meetings. LHAs do not need to reapply in subsequent years, and many volunteer with us for a few years before becoming old enough for a paid job. Some LHAs even find their first job as a historical interpreter right here at Stuhr Museum!

Apply Online
Download Forms

For questions concerning the LHA program, please contact Karen at (308) 385-5316 ext. 204 or e-mail

Our Living History Apprentices

LHAs are an important asset to our Summer Adventures program in June and July each summer.

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