News at the University of New Brunswick

Pincombe s Legacy includes both History of Moncton and Aid for Students

Author: Communications

Posted on Aug 24, 2011

Category: UNB Fredericton , UNB Saint John , myUNB

Alex Pincombe, BEd’61, BA’66, MA’69, is well-known as a historian in New Brunswick, but he should also be remembered as a generous benefactor of education. In his will, he included significant support for the C. Alexander Pincombe Memorial Fund to help UNB students in financial need. “This has been an extremely positive resource for the Financial Aid Office,” says its director, Shelly Clayton. “It has literally made the difference between students staying at university and having to leave. Without the Pincombe Fund, we would not be able to sustain students in emergency situations.” While open to all students with Canadian citizenship, preference can be given to students from Southeastern New Brunswick. Support for students from that part of the province should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with Mr. Pincombe’s life and work. Born and raised in Moncton, he is considered the city’s foremost historian, working on the complete history of Moncton up until the time of his death. His master’s thesis at UNB was in a similar vein, completing an academic career that included three UNB degrees, and solidifying his relationship with the university. In a 1984 letter to then-president Dr. James Downey, Mr. Pincombe says, “I deeply appreciated your recent letter, particularly the news of Dr. Bailey. You are right, when you mentioned my deep interest in UNB. So many of the Faculty were so kind and of great assistance to me.” Indeed, Pincombe acknowledges Dr. A. G. Bailey, long-time UNB history professor and administrator, for his help in reviewing the manuscript for The Birth of A Province, another of Pincombe’s many published works on Atlantic Canadian history. In addition to writing about history, he actively pursued public education of the past, ensuring that Moncton’s Free Meeting House was preserved and the Moncton Museum constructed. He taught at Moncton High School for a decade, and later at the New Brunswick Community College. A former student, Judith MacPherson, LLB’75, remembers his teaching effectiveness: “He took a keen interest in his students and the subject matter, which engendered high regard for him among students.” His impact stretched well beyond the classroom walls, as described by UNB president Dr. Eddy Campbell.  “Alex Pincombe certainly made his mark on this province and Moncton, in particular. His generosity to our institution and to students facing financial hardship adds a deeper layer to his already impressive legacy, one for which we are extremely grateful.”