Become A Volunteer

You can volunteer in many different ways!

School Tours

Teach students the history of Kern County and the West. It is our volunteers that bring Native American Life, One Room School, Frontier Life, Black Gold: The Oil Experience, and Pioneer Village to life.

Curatorial Services

Assist with the preservation of historic photographs, researching Kern County history, exhibit production, and more.

Museum Operations

Operations volunteers help with building and grounds maintenance, assist gift store staff, participate in Kern County Museum events, and clerk various exhibits.

Costumed Interpreters

Wear period costumes as you interpret the history of the businesses, homes, and people of Kern County, giving visitors a true understanding of that life was like for past residents. Perfect for local actors or performers. No acting experience is required.


Have a flair for advertising and promotion? Our Marketing Department is continually seeks enthusiastic and creative individuals to assist with tasks ranging from graphic design, photography, videography, event flyer distribution, and more.

The Ellen Baker Tracy Guild

In 2014, the Kern County Museum Foundation was seeking ways to better support projects and programs at the 75 year old institution. The Ellen Baker Tracy Guild was created to give local women the opportunity to help fulfill the Museum’s goals. The 50 member guild meets twice a year. At a fall luncheon, they select their annual project from recommendations from Museum staff. They also hear a report on new initiatives and programs. At the spring luncheon, they have an opportunity to see the completed project. So far, this group of extraordinary women have completed seven important restoration and construction projects in Pioneer Village at the museum.

About Ellen Baker Tracy

Ellen M. Whalen Baker Tracy has been called the First Lady of Bakersfield. She came to California in 1852 in an ox drawn wagon from Michigan as a 15 year old bride. The young widow married Colonel Thomas Baker in 1857 and was a pioneer on Kern Island in the 1860’s. Soon known as Baker’s Field, the small community benefited from Thomas’s engineering ability and Ellen’s hospitality. Ellen started a school in her home for local children, held sewing circles for local women, and potluck dinners for the community.

When Thomas Baker died in 1872, Ellen married local cattleman Ferdinand Tracy. She continued her work in the growing community with an interest in education and the arts. Ellen founded an orphanage for children and was active in Bakersfield affairs until her death in 1924.


Ellen Baker Tracy Guild members pay annual dues of $500 that are then used for the annual selected project. For more information on the Guild, current projects or membership, contact Brenna Charatsaris at


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