Maltby (also spelled Maltbie) was born in Norfolk, Connecticut,
in 1797. He was one of eleven children of Benjamin and Abigail
Maltbie. In 1823, he married Laura M. Baldwin (1798-1824) of Goshen,
Connecticut. They had one child, Lorin (dates unknown).
In 1825, a year after his first wife’s death, Jesse Maltby
married Salome Collar of Massachusetts. Jesse and Salome Maltby had
three children: Laura (Mrs. Selden H. Reed, 1826-1913), Benjamin
(dates unknown), and Clarissa (1834-1917).
Jesse Maltby lived in Norfolk, Connecticut, for the first forty
years of his life. There he built houses for Solomon Cowles and
In 1837 or 1838, Jesse Maltby sold his farm to James M. Cowles
and moved his family to the Western Reserve. They settled on an
farm in Bristol, Trumbull County, Ohio, which Jesse Maltby purchased
from Solomon Sager.
In Bristol, Maltby farmed and also served as an agent to sell
scythes, and possibly other goods, on commission. He was known
for his abolitionist
sentiments and active participation in the Underground Railroad.
Jesse Maltby sold his farm in 1854 and subsequently lived in
several other places in Bristol Township. He may have relocated
in Lorain County during 1854-55 when his daughter, Clarissa, was
enrolled in Oberlin College. In 1857 he purchased two lots on West
Lorain Street from Oberlin College. He later suffered financial
reverses and took up the trade of carpenter and joiner. In the
village directory, Jesse Maltby is listed as a mechanic.
The West Lorain Street property was sold to Alfred Platt in 1860.
Jesse Maltby later exchanged eighty acres of land in See County,
Iowa, for property including a lot on Forest Street in Oberlin.
The Maltby family lived in the house he built at 143 Forest Street
Forest Street prior to 1894) for over fifty years.
Jesse and Salome Maltby became members of First Congregational
Church in Oberlin in 1857. At their golden wedding anniversary
1875, Professor Henry Cowles spoke of his early acquaintance with
Jesse Maltby during their school days in Norfolk, Connecticut,
and S.A. Bushnell told of Maltby’s involvement in the Underground
Railroad in Trumbull County.
Jesse Maltby died at his home in Oberlin, Ohio, on December 30,
1884, and Salome Maltby died December 4, 1885. Following their
their daughter Clarissa continued to live in the family home. Her
cousin Lydia J. Brockway Maltby (Mrs. Edmund Maltby, 1820-92) also
lived with her for a year before her death in 1892. Lydia Maltby
was the mother of physicist Margaret Eliza Maltby (1860-1944; A.B.
1882, A.M. 1891) and of Martha Jane Maltby (1850-1932; Lit. 1874,
hon. A.M. 1882, Ph.B. 1895). A number of other Maltby cousins also
attended Oberlin College, as did Jesse Maltby’s grandsons Selden
A. Reed (d. 1904; enr. prep. 1870-71) and Jesse L. Maltby (enr. prep.
Clarissa C. Maltby died on December 4, 1917. She was the last
member of her immediate family to pass on, and was survived by
and three nephews, none of whom lived in Oberlin.
The Maltby family farm on Morgan Street later became the property
of Oberlin College through the bequest of Charles Martin Hall.
It is now part of the Oberlin Golf Course.