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Volunteering with Golden History Museums is a great way to learn new skills, meet new people, work with the public, and make a difference in our community. Read one of our volunteer profiles. It just might inspire you!
Visitor Services Volunteers
Come join the best group of volunteers in the west! We are actively recruiting admissions desk volunteers for Golden History Center for one three-hour shift per week on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday from 1-4 pm. We are also seeking substitutes for the front desk who are available on a flexible schedule and willing to work one shift per week as needed. Contact the coordinator at GHMVolunteer@GoldenHistory.org, or 303-277-8713 to express your interest.
All of our volunteers, with the exception of corporate group volunteers and other single-day workers, must complete a City of Golden volunteer application and consent to a background check. To get started, please complete this form.
By Shelly Bleckley
Volunteer extraordinaire Martha Gould was born in 1931 in Claremont, New Hampshire, and studied American history at the University of Michigan before acquiring a master’s in library and information science from Simmons College in Boston. Starting as a children’s librarian and storyteller on a bookmobile in the Bronx, Martha worked her way up through libraries in Oklahoma, Santa Fe, and Los Angeles until becoming the director of the Washoe County Library in Nevada.
In 1993, Martha was appointed by President Clinton to the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science. She served on NCLIS for 10 years, becoming the commission’s chair before retiring in 2003.
Martha received many awards for her work, but the two that mean the most to her are the plaque in Reno’s northwest branch library with her photograph and the inscription, “Once upon a time a unique individual transformed our libraries,” and a little silver plastic Oscar inscribed, “To the best Boss Ever” given to her by her staff when she retired.
Martha’s husband died in October 2005 and her son and family moved her to Golden in the summer of 2014. You can meet Martha while she’s working at the admissions desk in the Golden History Center on Thursday and Saturday afternoons.
By Shelly Bleckley
At Golden History Museums, we look for friendly, enthusiastic and curious volunteers to staff our admissions desk, and Gaye Jacobs certainly fits the bill.
Gaye retired after a long career as an entrepreneur in the legal field. Having always been interested in tours and travel, she was certified as a Professional Tour Guide and Tour Manager and became the founder and CEO of A Guide Out West, providing both group tours via motorcoaches, and private tours of Colorado and the western states. Gaye considers this a perfect opportunity to combine her love of travel, touring and western history, and her custom tours focus on storytelling more than just a recitation of facts and figures.
Gaye’s interest in Golden History Museums was born in her genes. She is descended from a pioneer family who came to Golden and Clear Creek “to get rich in the mines.” Some were miners and some worked as railroaders on the Colorado & Southern Railroad. Her grandmother and her siblings were all born in Golden, and she grew up hearing about her Cornish ancestors and their arrival in Golden. Most of them now reside in the Golden Pioneer Cemetery, so she visits them from time to time and reminds them that she and her family are still here.
Being a volunteer here gives Gaye a chance to brush up on her own history as she shares Golden and western history with patrons. But she also finds it fun. “I find the staff here to be one of the most friendly, supportive, knowledgeable and professional groups I have ever met. The work they do here every day is amazing and it’s fun to be a small part of it as a volunteer”. You’ll find Gaye at the Golden History Center admissions desk most Monday afternoons.
By Shelly Bleckley
Dennis has been a volunteer since 2008, first helping out in Collections and recently adding the Front Desk at the Golden History Center every Thursday. He started to volunteer because he’d had some contact with curator Mark Dodge, and when the City of Golden took over management of the museums, he felt confident in the museums’ future and wanted to contribute.
Dennis brings amazing knowledge and love of the Golden community to his job. He began working as a sheriff’s deputy for Jefferson County in 1971. Soon after he joined the department, Undersheriff Chuck Morse asked Dennis to take over as the unofficial organizational archivist, and to preserve and document the history of the department. Although Dennis was the first deputy in the department with a four-year college degree, his degree was in English and didn’t prepare him for suddenly becoming a historian.
On his own time, Dennis began researching objects and interviewing people. He developed a list of dates and names of past sheriffs and undersheriffs. On his last day with the department, Sheriff Harold Bray asked Dennis to interview him and preserve some of his memories. Dennis put his own money and time into collecting and preserving badges, handcuffs, body chains and photos. And when the time came to find a place for his collection to live he was courted by the University of Wyoming and the National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington, DC. But Dennis felt the collection should stay in Golden, and he has not only donated it to Golden History Museums, but is helping to record and document it.
Dennis retired from the sheriff’s department in 2004 with the rank of captain and now teaches part-time at Metro State University. We are proud to have him working with us, and you can drop by the History Center and meet him on most Thursdays. As Dennis says, “My collection’s in good hands and now I’m giving back.”