Edward Rowe Snow

dad rex edward rowe snow and jim walton on adventure III

seacraft article in lowell sun_1961

This is a photo of Edward Rowe Snow (far left), Rex Trailer (notice he wore his cowboy boots, even when going scuba diving), Jim Walton of Boston Diving Center and Adventure III, and Willis Lefavour (my dad), aboard the Adventure III heading for a sunken treasure adventure.  Also, a newspaper clipping from 1961 picturing Edward Rowe Snow and Rex, and a story about Seacraft and Adventure III.

Edward Rowe Snow (August 22, 1902 Winthrop, Massachusetts – April 10, 1982) was an American author and historian.  He was a high school teacher in Winthrop, Massachusetts. During World War II, he served with the XII Bomber Command, and he became a first lieutenant. He was a daily columnist at The Patriot Ledger newspaper in Quincy, Massachusetts from 1957-82.

Snow is widely known for his stories of pirates and other nautical subjects; he wrote over forty books and many shorter publications. In all, he was the author of more than 100 publications, mainly about New England coastal history.

Mr. Snow was also a major chronicler of New England maritime history. With the publication of The Islands of Boston Harbor in 1935, he became famous as a historian of the New England coast and also as a popular storyteller, lecturer, preservationist, and treasure hunter. Forty years later, he was still publishing.

He is also famous for carrying on the tradition of the “Flying Santa” for over forty years (1936–1980). Every Christmas he would hire a small plane and drop wrapped gifts to the lighthouse keepers and their families.

In the 1940s and early 1950s he hosted a weekly Sunday radio show for youngsters and early teens called “Six Bells” where one precisely at 3:00 PM would join in hearing of the adventures of pirates and buccaneers along the Atlantic Coast.

Many credit him with saving Fort Warren, located on Georges Island in Boston Harbor, in the 1950s.

In August 2000, a plaque was dedicated to Mr. Snow on his beloved Georges Island.  A Boston Harbor ferry boat was named for him.  (from Wikipedia)

E.J. Lefavour


  • Very cool. What a fascinating family you have EJ! No wonder you turned out so awesomely fascinating yourself!


    • Everyone is fascinating when we look into their lives – even a hermit who has lived in a cave his whole life would have fascinating experiences and tales to tell.


      • Very true, good point! But great that you have the pics to go along with the wonderful stories, what an important part of keeping the memories and heritage alive.


        • True – I am finding it fascinating going back through old photos and history that goes with them at my mom’s house and realizing how interesting their lives have been – things I didn’t know or pay much attention to when I was a kid and they were just mom and dad. They were always pretty cool, until I became a teenager anyway, and then they didn’t know anything.


        • Of course, you were a typical teenager, but great you are discovering it now and for sure even though everyone’s lives are interesting, your parents are exceptionally good looking and had all the media coverage and famous friends/colleagues, so really is quite something.


  • Fun to learn about the then new adventures from years back! I remember it being called “Skin” Diving which sounds funny now. Fun read, they were all interesting people! Thanks for sharing EJ.


    • Yes, it did used to be called skin diving. I have an old catalog from Seacraft of skin diving accessories, which is filled with what we would call scuba diving accessories. I still think of skin diving since it is what I grew up hearing.


  • Thanks for the walk back I really enjoyed it 🙂


  • What a colorful life, thanks for sharing.


  • Eileen (Rutledge) Bolman

    Edward Rowe Snow was my Sunday school teacher in Winthrop in the 1950’s. He used to take me out in his canoe off of Winthrop and the airport. I used to go with him when he did his harbor island trips out of Boston. He got me interested in the history of the lighthouses and the islands. In later life I worked for Steve Douglass on both the “Bev” and the “King Eider” using the skills I had learned in my youth from Edward (Ebow) Roe Snow. He was a very interesting man.


    • What a great experience Eileen. I’m glad this post brought back fond memories for you, and that were able to share them with us. I knew he lived in Winthrop, but didn’t know he was a Sunday school teacher – nice addition to his persona.


  • FAN-tastic, EJ!!! Thank you for sharing!


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