Thursday, May 24, 2012


Adelaide Bowles was educated in a private school in Elmira, NY, and married Silas B. Maltby (1873-1898) around 1895.  She was the aunt of the writer Paul Bowles (1910-1999), her brother’s son.

Adelaide B. Maltby came to NYC in 1899 to attend the Pratt Institute library school.  After graduating from the one-year course in 1900, she worked in the Pratt Library for six months.  She then returned upstate to work as a Children’s Librarian at the Buffalo Public Library, 1901-1905.  She was forced to resign due to poor health.

Maltby returned to NYC and in November 1906 was hired by Anne Carroll Moore to organize children’s work at the Chatham Square Branch.  Moore had recently become NYPL’s first Supervisor of Work with Children and Maltby was one of her first new hires.  In 1907 Maltby was promoted to Branch Librarian at the Chatham Square Branch and later also headed the Tompkins Square (1908-1917) and St. George (1917-1919) branches.

Adelaide Maltby and Anne Carroll Moore were listed as boarders at the same address in the 1910 census.  Paul Bowles’ biographers note that his aunt and Moore were roommates in a Greenwich Village apartment, circa 1917 or 1918.  Paul Bowles credited Anne Carroll Moore with suggesting that he attend the University of Virginia.

Adelaide Maltby died suddenly of pneumonia during the 1919 influenza pandemic.

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