Record

CodeNA8632
Dates1905-1999
Person NameSmith; Janet Adam (1905-1999); author and literary editor
SurnameSmith
ForenamesJanet Adam
Epithetauthor and literary editor
ActivityJanet Adam Smith was born in 1905, the daughter of George Adam Smith (1856-1942), principal of Aberdeen University. She was raised in Aberdeen but educated at Cheltenham Ladies' College and Somerville College, Oxford. Like her parents she became a keen mountaineer and it was through this that she met her husband, Michael Roberts (1902-1948), who she married in 1935. She had, by this time, been assistant editor of the Listener magazine at the BBC for 5 years and in the same year published her first anthology of poetry. Smith gave up work to look after her young children, but after her husband died at an early age took a post as assistant literary editor of the New Statesman. She was made literary editor in 1952, became a Trustee of the National Library of Scotland and began publishing her own work including an edition of the poems and letters of Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894), the 'Faber Book of Children's Verse' and in 1965 a biography of John Buchanan (1875-1940). She was well respected in academic circles and was a visiting professor at Barnard College, New York in 1961 and 1964 and was awarded an honorary degree from Aberdeen in 1962. Smith married for a second time, to John Carleton, in 1965. After his death in 1974 she continued living in North Kensington, travelling widely and serving on several committees including a period as President of the Royal Literary Fund (1976-1984). She died in 1999 aged 93.
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