Fonds UBCA-ARC-1404 - W.H. Mathews fonds

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W.H. Mathews fonds

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Physical description

1.38 m of textual records and other material.

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Biographical history

William H. Mathews was born in Vancouver in 1919 and attended UBC from 1935 to 1941, obtaining a Bachelor of Applied Science in geological engineering. A Master of Applied Science followed up this degree at UBC with a major in petrology and physics. Mathews received many awards during his studies: the GM Dawson scholarship in 1939; the Walter Moberly book prize in 1940; and the BC Academy of Science research grant in 1941. His experience includes working as a student assistant for the Geologic Survey of Canada (1938-1941) and the BC Department of Mines as an Associate Mining Engineer (1942-1946). Mathews then taught and completed a Ph.D. at the University of California in 1948, which focused on volcanism and glacial history in southwestern BC. He joined the Department of Geology at UBC in 1951 and headed the department from 1964 -1971. Mathews continued teaching and researching at UBC until he retired in 1984 and became a Professor Emeritus. Throughout his lifetime, Mathews was actively involved as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Geologic Society of America; a member of the American Geophysical Union, the Geological Association of Canada, the British Glaciological Society, the Arctic Institute of North America, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi, the Alpine Club of Canada, and the Natural History Society of British Columbia. Mathews passed away in 2003 and will be remembered for his work as a geologist, professional engineer, and scholar.

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Scope and content

The fonds consists of correspondence from 1942-1995; personal papers from 1935-1941; lecture/administrative material from 1950-[196-?]; soil and rock research from 1943-1994; earthquake research from 19[76]-1990; volcano research from 1947-1993; glacial research from 1932-1993; coal research from 1977-1980; uranium research from 1977-1980; BC Power Commission from 1957-1967; and photographs from 1912-1977.

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Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

The bulk of the fonds was donated to the University Archives by Mathews' daughter, Margaret Parlor on February 2005. The notebooks in the Field Notes series were found by Jay Sherwood in an antiquarian book shop in Victoria, and donated to the Archives in October 2017.


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Some photographs have been digitized and available through UBC Library Open Collections UBC 116.1.

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Physical description

Includes 360 photographs (prints and negatives), 28 cm of maps, 7 charts.

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