Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Emily G. Davis was born in Pennsylvania on this day 107 years ago.

She attended Syracuse University where she earned a BA in Library Science in 1925.   At Syracuse she was elected to Pi Lambda Sigma [], the first library science honor society in the United States, which had been founded at Syracuse in 1903.

Davis immediately joined the Marshall City (WVa) Public Library as a substitute and then became a reference assistant at the Hackley (Muskegon MI) Public Library, 1925-1927.  She returned to Syracuse as an art reference librarian, 1927-1928.  In 1929-1930 she worked as a Research Assistant in the Johns-Manville Corporation library.  The latter experience was unusual in that only two other NYPL Branch Librarians worked in a business library prior to joining NYPL.

In 1930 Emily Davis began substituting at NYPL’s Circulation Department and received a regular appointment the following year.  She worked as a school and reference specialist in five different branches in the Bronx and Manhattan.  Davis was named Branch Librarian at the Yorkville Branch in 1947 and served there until her retirement in 1964. 

Emily G. Davis married Newton G. Rosebaugh sometime in the 1920s, and it appears that she was the first woman in this group of Branch Librarians to continue to use her maiden name at NYPL after she married.  It doesn’t seem that Davis and Rosebaugh were separated since they were listed as living together in Queens, NY, in the 1930 US Census and appear on ship passenger lists traveling to Europe in 1932 and 1933.  She also is listed in the Social Security Death Index as Emily G. Davis.

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