Volunteers & Seasonal Paid Guides

Victoria Mansion would not be the vibrant organization it is without volunteers. We offer training sessions throughout the year and have a variety of opportunities available. Volunteers at Victoria Mansion are the public face of the museum. By generously donating their time, volunteers enable the Mansion staff to focus on restoration, educational initiatives, and other projects.

Volunteers at the Mansion can take part in several ways. The most popular option is to receive training as a docent. Docents act as a room stewards on self-paced days, give guided tours, and lead themed tours to school groups. Other ways volunteers can help are to assist with special events and programs, help in the museum gift shop, offer administrative support to the office staff, and join committees.

The Earle G. Shettleworth Junior Docent Program provides training for students ages 12-17 to become room stewards in the house. Also available as a for-credit internship opportunity for high school students. Scroll down to learn more!

For information or questions about volunteering at the Mansion, contact:

Stacia Hanscom, Director of Education and Public Programs
(207) 772-4841, ext. 104

Volunteer Docent Guidelines

We are appreciative of the time and expertise of our volunteer docents. We could not effectively welcome the volume of visitors we see without them!

  • Ideally, we ask docents to give approximately 40 hours of volunteer time annually, although we are very grateful for those who are able to give much more.
  • We do understand, however, that there may be those who are passionate about the Mansion and its mission who may not be able to commit to a minimum of 40 hours. We can be flexible and would like to work with you to determine how volunteering at Victoria Mansion might fit into your schedule.
  • Victoria Mansion is open to the public for tours 7 months out of the year, but there are off-season volunteer opportunities as well. Volunteers are welcomed and can be trained on a rolling basis throughout the year.

Please click the button below to fill out our Volunteer application. For consideration as a Paid Guide, please scroll down to the Paid Guide application.

Volunteer Docents Receive

  • A docent manual (approximately 100 pages of information on the house and relevant contextual information)
  • Opportunities for educational enrichment throughout the year
  • Regular email updates when new information becomes available
  • Social events throughout the year
  • Mentoring relationships with experienced docents
  • Intensive training period for new volunteers offered throughout the year
  • Annual “refresher” courses prior to the start of the regular season
  • Opportunities to help with research initiatives at the Mansion

Earle G. Shettleworth Junior Docent Program

  • Opportunities for volunteering for students ages 12-17
  • Learn about working in public history as a room steward during self-guided tours
  • Mentorship with an experienced docent educator
  • Flexibility with summer and school year schedules
  • Grow your interest in art, history, and technology at a local historic site
  • Great way to build confidence with public speaking and working with local and tourist crowds
  • Happy to work with schools to develop junior docent duties as a for-credit internship

Paid Part-Time Guides

Victoria Mansion also hires part-time tour guides for seasonal positions. Guide expectations include:

  • At least 1 shift (3-4 hours) per week during open seasons
  • Ability to commit to 3-hour shifts
  • Willingness to learn Point of Sale system and online ticketing system
  • Flexible schedule
  • Adherence to Mansion rules


“I became a docent at Victoria Mansion upon completion of the Portland History Docents course. I chose the Mansion because of its amazing beauty and marveled at the artistry and talent of the craftsmen who worked to build the Mansion. Not having a background in art or history was not a problem. The training program provided by the Mansion staff with the support of a mentor overcame any concerns I might have had of being able to be a knowledgeable docent. I enjoy the camaraderie of the docents, always learning something new and have come to appreciate how the Mansion spans a century and a half of culture changes, social changes and economic changes. The Mansion is more than just a building, it was a home to the families that lived there, and has a great story to tell.” – Volunteer Docent Linda L.

“I have been a volunteer docent for several years now. Since the outset certain things have remained constant. The staff, docents and guides are all supportive and a pleasure to work with. The staff is inclusive, as well as readily shares new information as it becomes available. The atmosphere provides a forum for new learning and opportunity to engage with staff, peers and the public. ” – Volunteer Docent Mary S.

“Having started my training in the spring of 2023, I’m much newer than most and also one of the younger docents. At first, I was a bit nervous but found it very easy to step into the role because everyone here is so kind and welcoming. The entire team fosters an environment of inclusivity, passion, and warmth. Many of us consider the Mansion our second home – not just because we spend so much time here – but because the wonderful people who are passionate about the Mansion make it feel like a home away from home.” – Guide and Volunteer Researcher Eoin T.

“I’m always inspired by Victoria Mansion. Not only are there lovely furnishings and lovely people, but by conveying our knowledge to others we create a tangible community connection. We all share a desire to understand the present in the light of the past, and by standing in the beautiful space created in the Mansion we strengthen our connections to one another.” – Trustee and Volunteer Docent Cynthia M.