Jay Martin holds a Bachelor’s in Public History from Western Michigan University (1984), a Master’s in American Studies (1988) and a Ph.D. in History (1995) from Bowling Green State University. He has served as the chief administrator for several museums, including the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum (Madisonville, Louisiana), the American Victory Mariners Memorial and Museum Ship (Tampa, Florida), and the Wisconsin Maritime Museum (Manitowoc, Wisconsin), as well as teaching American and Public history at various institutions, most recently at Southeastern Louisiana University. In 2010 he joined the faculty at Central Michigan University in a joint appointment as Director of the CMU Museum of Cultural and Natural History/Gerald Poor School House Museum and Director of the Museum Studies Program.
Offices: Rowe 103 and Powers 238
Phone: (989) 774–7165 or (989) 774–7769
Office Hours: (pdf)
Research and Teaching Interests
With training and experience in underwater archaeology, American Studies, and many fields of Public History, Dr. Martin has worked professionally as a curator, archivist, park ranger, director, expert witness, oral historian, folklorist, and consultant. He is a former merchant mariner and specialist in maritime history, with interest in the transmission of maritime technology and the influence of the maritime world upon the terrestrial. Among his recent projects are the creation of new programs that combine the study of history and the application of science education techniques with the restoration of the Tchefuncte River Light Station and the exploration of archaeological resources in the Tchefuncte River of Southeast Louisiana. Dr. Martin specializes in developing unique collaborative ventures for sustainable management and interpretation.
Cultural Resource Management Project at McGulpin Lighthouse and Northern Emmet County, 2012-present. Co-PI with Sarah Surface-Evans.
“The Rodney Dangerfield of the Maritime World: Great Lakes Scows Go Worldwide.” Exhibit,
Completed October 2012 (70 cf foot case).
“Workload and the Engaged Historian,” History@Work: A Public History Commons from the National Council on Public History (May 28, 2012).
CMU Oral History Program, Founder, Fall 2010–present.
“Explorations in Maritime History” Oral History Project, PI, 2013–present
“History of Central Michigan University” Oral History Project, PI October 2011-present. Co-PI with Brittany Fremion, February 2013-present.
“CMU: Life Outside the Classroom.” CMU Museum of Cultural and Natural History. Open February 24-October 30, 2011 (3400 square feet—refereed)
Repatriation of the Remains of 144 Unaffiliated Native Americans in accord with NAGPRA,
CMU Museum of Cultural and Natural History, November 2010.
“Maritime Louisiana: A Model Exhibit,” Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum, 2010. (1200 square feet)
“Tchefuncte River Lighthouse Interpretative Plan.” With Dean Barnes, 2010.
Southeastern Archaeology Conference, Mobile, Alabama, November 6, 2009, co-presenter with Andrea White, “Tchefuncte River Light Station.”