The University of New Brunswick and the broader academic community are mourning the loss of Dr. Elizabeth Mancke, a distinguished historian, mentor, and scholar, who passed away on September 15, 2023, after a brief battle with cancer.


Dr. Mancke, born in Atlanta, Georgia, was a passionate educator who dedicated her life to the study of history, particularly comparative Canadian and US history. She joined the University of New Brunswick in 2012 as Canadian Research Chair in Atlantic Canadian Studies, director of the Atlantic Canada Studies Centre, and professor in the Department of History. Her impact on the university community and beyond was immeasurable.


Colleagues remember her as a devoted colleague and a generous person. Dr. Sean Kennedy, Graduate Studies Director in the Department of History at UNB, expressed, “She had a big impact and touched the lives of many.” 


Dr. Cindy Brown, Director of Honours in the same department, fondly recalled Dr. Mancke as a friend, mentor, and inspiring scholar. 


“We’ve lost an important mentor to many students,” Dr. Brown remarked, highlighting the significant void left by her passing.


Dr. Mancke’s contributions extended far beyond the classroom. She was deeply involved in impactful research projects, including ‘Ecologies, Knowledge, and Power in the Gulf of St. Lawrence Region, c. 1500-present,’ and ‘Military Service, Citizenship and Political Culture: Militia Studies in Atlantic Canada, 1700-2000,’ both funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.


In addition to her scholarly achievements, Dr. Mancke was a staunch advocate for students and the value of humanities education. She was recognized for her outstanding contributions with a UNB Merit Award in 2020.


A celebration of Dr. Mancke’s life will be held on October 14 at McAdam’s Funeral Home in Fredericton, with memorial tributes at 3 p.m. The event will be livestreamed for those unable to attend in person. Flags on both the Fredericton and Saint John campuses will be lowered in her memory.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested contributions to the Atlantic Canada Studies Centre to support scholarships for graduate students in Dr. Mancke’s name. Donations can be made here.

Photo credit to the Mancke family and McAdams Funeral Home.

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