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Marie J. "Mario" Mamalakis Papers

Collection 204

Mamalakis, Marie J. “Mario” (1913–2003). Papers, 1940s–1990s

14 ½ feet, 3 volumes

Marie John Mamalakis was born in Shreveport on September 15, 1913, the second of three children of John Emanuel and Demetria Passadakia Mamalakis. Her parents, both Greek, had come to the United States a few years earlier. Shortly after her birth, the family moved to Opelousas, where Ms. Mamalakis, known as “Mario”, attended public and private schools. In 1926, the family moved to New York, where they lived for three years.

On the family’s return to Lafayette, Ms. Mamalakis attended Southwestern Louisiana Institute (today the University of Louisiana at Lafayette), graduating with a degree in English in 1933. From 1934 to 1940, she taught public school in St. Landry Parish. In 1941, she entered Louisiana State University for graduate work, and upon earning her Master’s degree in library science, she returned to Lafayette as head of the circulation department at Edith Garland Dupré Library at SLI. She also taught courses in library science. Having reached the rank of full professor, in 1965 she was named public relations director of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Ms. Mamalakis was also a freelance journalist and photographer. She wrote hundreds of articles about Louisiana, its people, and its unique cultural heritage. Most were published in the Daily Advertiser, the Times-Picayune, Dixie Roto, SLEMCO Magazine, the Beaumont Enterprise, and the Beaumont Journal, for which she served as a correspondent for many years.

Ms. Mamalakis received numerous honors for her achievements. She was cited in several biographical dictionaries, including Who’s Who in the South and Southwest, Who’s Who Among American Women, Foremost Women in Communications, and Two Thousand Women of Achievement, among others. She won a number of press awards, including a national first place in feature story writing. In 1984 she received the Outstanding University of Louisiana at Lafayette Alumni Award. On another occasion, she was honored at a University of Louisiana at Lafayette Foundation Distinguished Professor Banquet. In 2000, at the invitation of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, she became a charter member of the Louisiana Heritage Society. She also received an annual Lafayette Civic Cup Award for her service to the community. She said, “For me, it’s been a labor of love, love for a city that I think has yet to reach its full potential”. She also received an award as an “Honorary Cajun”.

Ms. Mamalakis died on October 18, 2003, and was buried at the Myrtle Grove Cemetery in Opelousas. She was 90 years of age.

This collection consists of her working files and personal files. Included are her writings for the Advertiser’s Sunday Real Estate section, and other Louisiana writings on topics such as Mardi Gras, Lafayette, Louisiana material, etc. Her working files are organized by subject and then alphabetically. This collection also included a large collection of personal photographs.


A. Real Estate: Alphabetical Listing by Street Addresses
  1. A - Bel Box 1
  2. Ben - C Box 2
  3. C Box 3
  4. D - F Box 4
  5. G - J Box 5
  6. K- Mc Box 6
  7. M- O Box 7
  8. P- Ri Box 8
  9. Ro- Sa Box 9
  10. Si- T Box 10
  11. U- Z Box 11
B. Real Estate: Alphabetical Listing by Home/Business Names
  1. A- F Box 12
  2. G- L Box 13
  3. M- R Box 14
  4. S- Z Box 15
C. Real Estate: Alphabetical Listing by Subdivisions
  1. A - Z Box 16
D. Mardi Gras
  1. By Date, 1949-1977 Box 17
  2. By Date, 1978-1981 Box 17a
  3. By Date, 1982-1991, History Box 18
  4. Histories - Clippings Box 19
E. Family Histories Box 20
F. Lafayette (City) Material Box 21
  1. Lafayette Chamber of Commerce Box 22
  2. University of Southwestern Louisiana Box 22
  3. Drilling School Box 23
  4. LAGCOE Box 23
  5. Concert Series Box 23
G. Cajundome Box 23a
H. Miscellaneous Box 24
I. Louisiana: Miscellaneous Materials Boxes 25 & 26
J. Personal Files Box 27
K. Artifacts and Plaques Boxes 28 & 29
L. Photographs Boxes 30, 31 & 32
    Identified or Unidentified  
M. Magnetic Tapes and Reel-to-Reel  
  1. Unidentified Box 33
  2. Identified Box 34
N. Scrapbooks Volumes 1-3


Mamalakis, Marie J. “Mario” (1913 -2003). Papers, 1940s-1990s (PDF)