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No.: PR3789
TITLE: Mardon Family fonds
CREATOR: Mardon Family
DATE RANGE: 1946-2016
EXTENT: 2.89 m textual records. – 44 photographs. – 1 audiocassette.

Ernest Mardon was born in Harris County, Texas in 1928 to Professor Heber 'Austin' and Marie Therese Mardon (neé Dickey). He attended Gordonstoun School, Moray, Scotland 1945-1946; The Cistercian College Roscrea, Tipperary Co., Ireland 1946-1948; Trinity College, Dublin University, Ireland 1948-1950; University of Perugia, Certificate of Italian 1950; and the University of London, School of Oriental Studies 1954. He earned his Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Alberta in 1961, and from the University of Ottawa, a Master of Arts degree in 1966, and a Ph.D., English Literature in 1967.

Ernest served with the British Army, Gordon Highlanders, U.K. 1951; Suez Canal Zone, Cyprus, Libya 1952-1954; Middle East Land Forces (MELF) 1952-1954; and was honorably discharged in 1958 with a rank of Lieutenant. He immigrated to Canada in 1954 and married May Gertrude Knowler in 1957. They had three children; Austin Albert, Mary Teresa, and Teresa May.

Upon his arrival in Canada, Ernest worked as a Staff Correspondent with the British United Press Wire Service in Edmonton, and after 1961 began teaching at Thibault High School in Morinville. Ernest was a member of the Founding Faculty, University of Lethbridge 1967 and was an Associate Professor of English there until his retirement in 1990. He also taught English as a visiting instructor at the University of Calgary, Laurentian University, the University of Saskatchewan, Nipissing University College, Walden University, and Red Deer College.

Ernest Mardon was a member of the Provincial Executive of the Home and School Association and was involved with the Canadian Onomastic Institute, Antarctic Institute of Canada, and the Progressive Conservative Party. He received the Skarin Award, University of Alberta, the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal, and is the author, co-author, and translator of dozens of books.

Ernest died in March of 2016 in Lethbridge.

May Gertrude Mardon (neé Knowler) is the daughter of Edmonton businessman A. E. Knowler. She received her Standard Education Certificate from the University of Alberta in 1955 and a Permanent Teaching Certificate in 1957. She taught elementary school for the Edmonton Separate School Board 1955-1963 and was a substitute teacher in Ottawa and Lethbridge. In the late 1960s she was diagnosed with schizophrenia and went on to complete a Bachelor of Education in Elementary Education, the University of Lethbridge in 1980 and assisted her son, Austin, and husband, Ernest, with their research and publications.

Austin Mardon was born June 25, 1962 in Edmonton, and grew up in Lethbridge. He attended the University of Grenoble in 1979, receiving a Diploma in French, and then attended the University of Lethbridge and graduated in 1985 with a major in cultural geography. As a graduate student at South Dakota State University, he attended the Space Studies Program, received a master's of science in 1988, and was a research scientist with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Science Foundation on a meteorite recovery expedition in Antarctica from 1986-1987. He received the U.S. Congressional Antarctic Service Medal for his efforts and risk during that expedition.

In 1990, Austin received a master's degree in education from Texas A&M University and later earned a Ph.D. in Geography from Greenwich University, Australia. He received an honorary law degree (LL.D.) from the University of Alberta in 2011 for his advocacy for the mentally ill and his status as a member of Alberta’s Premier’s Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities. Austin was elected an International Fellow and Corresponding Fellow of the Explorers Club of New York and was inducted into the International Academy of Astronautics. In 2014 he was elected into the Royal Society of Canada, the pre-eminent academic society of Canada.

As a scholar, Austin Mardon has been associated with numerous institutions and societies worldwide and in different capacities. He is the founder, past president, and current director of the Antarctic Institute of Canada and has been a freelance writer and editor, and the editor and founder of Golden Meteorite Press since 1997. He has worked as a Geophysical Consultant at the Stargate Research Lab in California 1999-2003 and2004-2007, and Idaho 2003-2004. Austin has also written or co-written several dozen books and over 200 articles and abstracts in areas including astronomy, history, Antarctic research, and mental health.

In 1992 Austin was diagnosed with schizophrenia. He married Stephanie Ngar Ling Liu, August 24, 1996 and they divorced in 2001. He married Catherine Newman, a lawyer and activist, in 2006, and they have co-authored several books together. Since his diagnosis, Austin has worked on behalf of the mentally ill and has been involved with a number of mental health, disability, and other organizations, societies, and committees. Austin is an Assistant Adjunct Professor with the John Dossetor Health Ethics Centre and was appointed as an Assistant Adjunct Professor in the University of Alberta’s Department of Psychiatry – the first time someone with schizophrenia has been appointed to such a position.

CUSTODIAL HISTORY:Records came to the Provincial Archives of Alberta in four donations between March 2016 and December 2016, all from Austin Mardon.
SCOPE AND CONTENT: The fonds includes records of several members of the Mardon family, including Ernest, May, Austin, and Catherine. Material includes, correspondence, genealogy, postcards, anniversary announcements, newspaper articles, invitations, journals, teaching certificate, articles, publishing contributions, drafts, contracts, research, academic papers course syllabi, report cards, thesis, class notes and coursework, exams, recognition and awards, conference material, speeches, curriculum vitae and resumes, the Order of Canada information, photographs of family and friends, and an audio cassette tape.
ARRANGEMENT NOTE: Records will be intellectually arranged into the following series: Ernest Mardon series, May Mardon series, Austin Mardon series, and Catherine Mardon series.
LANGUAGE NOTE: The material is in English.
ASSOCIATED MATERIAL: For more records of the Mardon family, see the Austin Mardon family fonds (RED red-3005) at the Red Deer and District Archives.
RELATED RECORDS: The Provincial Archives of Alberta reference library contains ten volumes authored by Ernest Mardon that can be accessed in the Sandra Thompson Reading Room.
GENERAL NOTE: Information for the biographical sketch was sourced from the following:,, and [Accessed May 9, 2017].
RELATED SERIES: PR3789.0001 (Ernest Mardon series)
PR3789.0002 (May Mardon series)
PR3789.0004 (Catherine Mardon series)
RELATED FILES: Display FileList

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