Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Fellowship Program at the New-York Historical Society?
The Fellowship Program at the New-York Historical Society is a highly competitive and selective program, intended to provide scholars at various times during their careers with access to the collections of the Library and Museum of the New-York Historical Society. The collections, established in 1804, comprise an unparalleled resource for the use of primary documents and objects of material culture. Recognized widely for the distinguished nature of its exhibitions and programs, the Society has long been recognized as one of the premier institutions in the nation for the study of American history. The fellowship program includes short-term fellowships for brief, non-residential consultation of the collections, as well as long-term fellowships directed at scholars in various stages of their professional careers
What fellowships are available?
The Patricia D. Klingenstein Library at the New-York Historical Society currently offers a variety of fellowships:
Andrew W. Mellon Fellowships in Women's History
The Bernard and Irene Schwartz Fellowships, offered jointly with Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellowship
The National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship
Patricia and John Klingenstein Short-Term Fellowships
Please explain the fellowship application process.
Please refer to link for appropriate fellowship to determine requirements. A selection committee will convene approximately one month after the January deadline. Successful applicants will be notified in mid-to-late February.
How do I submit my application materials?
Applications must be submitted via Interfolio by following the link on the particular fellowship's description page on the N-YHS website. Here one also may find specific fellowship requirements.
How long should my writing sample be?
Writing samples should be no more than ten pages or 3,000 words in length. Excerpts from larger works are acceptable, as are complete essays or articles.
How long should my project proposal be?
Project proposals should be two to three pages long.
What information should be included in my Curriculum Vitae?
Curriculum Vitae should include date of Ph.D. (if held) and conferring institution, current institutional affiliation and rank, mailing and e-mail addresses, telephone and fax numbers, and other relevant information pertaining to your scholarly background and suitability for the desired fellowship.
I do not have a Ph.D. May I apply?
The National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship welcomes applicants who have completed formal academic training and are not in the process of gaining a degree. For this fellowship, Ph.D.s are not required. The Schwartz Fellowship requires a Ph.D. within three years of the fellow’s starting date in the next academic year. The Mellon Fellowship requires a Ph.D. within three to five years of the fellow’s starting date. The Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in Women’s History requires a Ph.D. Applicants for the Mellon Pre-doctoral Fellowship must be enrolled in a Ph.D. program in the humanities and be on track to completing their degree.
May I apply to more than one of the offered fellowships?
Yes. Provided you satisfy a specific fellowship’s criteria, you may apply to multiple N-YHS fellowships.
What is the procedure for applying for more than one New-York Historical Society Fellowship?
Follow the specific requirements for each fellowship as outlined on the website and submit separate application packages via Interfolio as directed. It is acceptable to use the same letters of support for multiple fellowships; recommenders, however, need only submit one letter via email.
How do I submit letters of recommendation?
Letters of recommendation should be uploaded to Interfolio, preferably on letterhead. If this proves to be problematic, instruct your recommender to email letters directly to firstname.lastname@example.org including your last name and fellowship name (or names) in the subject line. It is your responsibility to inform recommenders of the January deadline. Letters of recommendation should be addressed to the Fellowship Selection Committee.
What advice can you provide concerning fellowship study topics?
It is recommended that before you apply for a fellowship at the New-York Historical Society, you consult the Library website and BobCat database for materials located exclusively in our institution.
Links are below:
Please be advised that there should be enough relevant materials in our collections for a fellow to warrant a 10-month research fellowship. N-YHS welcomes applicants from various disciplines, who focus on a subject area that has relevancy within our collections, and has unique and impressive scholarly merit.
What criteria does the Fellowship Selection Committee focus on concerning an applicant?
Applicants are reviewed in a number of ways. Equal emphasis is placed on an applicant’s academic and professional background, publications, letters of recommendation, and fellowship study topic, which should be compatible with and make focused use of the library collections of the New-York Historical Society. Fellowship candidate selection is very competitive.
Could you explain the fellowship stipend?
Each fellowship awards a specific non-negotiable taxable stipend to the successful candidate, plus benefits. The stipend listed in each fellowship synopsis is before taxes and does not include living expenses. Please be advised that fellows are financially responsible for their living arrangements. Once awarded a fellowship, N-YHS would be happy to provide advice concerning living and working in New York.
May I work if I receive an N-YHS fellowship?
Fellows are expected to be in residence at the N-YHS full time during normal working hours 9 am – 5 pm. Outside employment may not interfere with a fellow's work for the New-York Historical Society or create a potential conflict of interest. Fellows should disclose and receive clearance for freelance work or outside employment prior to accepting a fellowship.
I am applying from outside the United States. What do I need to do to be considered?
N-YHS welcomes international applicants for fellowships, provided they can successfully obtain a visa. Foreign nationals who are not residents of the US must be able to obtain a J-1 visa to accept an award.
Please Note: Foreign nationals are eligible to apply to the NEH fellowship, if they have lived in the United States for at least three years immediately preceding the application deadline.