“Harry did so much for this town,” says Bonnie, who helped care for her father-in-law until he died in 1977, just months before his 90th birthday. “If somebody didn’t have fuel oil, they got fuel oil. If they didn’t have coal, they got coal. When Harry retired in the 1970’s, they gave him a huge party and more than 500 people came. A lot of those people had survived through tough times because Harry Snow helped them.”

201205may_021 In a 1983 newspaper article, Harry’s son, William, talked about his father’s “accommodating” personality. “My father always believed in accommodating the public and that’s what he wanted people to remember us by,” says William, who proceeded his son, Sid, as Snow’s CEO with responsibility for the company’s management and finances.

“My dad was the guy who succeeded in getting the store computerized in the 1970’s,” says Sid, also noting that his father kept Snow’s finances on an even keel for decades.

201205may_017 A steady hand on the financial tiller has remained important at Snow’s, says Sid, who remembers that his grandfather was so trusted by the townspeople of Orleans that he actually became the town’s bank. “Harry was the bank in Orleans,” says Sid. “In the early days when the town didn’t have a bank, everybody brought their money to Snow’s and Harry would get on the train with a gun and ride to a Harwich bank to deposit the money there.”

Bonnie recalls that Sid and her son James, adored their grandfather. “James would follow Harry everywhere,” says Bonnie, remembering that the cousins got their start at Snow’s Home and Garden learning to bag birdseed with their grandpa as young teens in the 1970’s.

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Susan Dewey is the associate publisher and editor of Cape Cod LIFE, Cape Cod HOME, and Cape Cod ART. She lives in Centerville on Cape Cod and enjoys gardening, sailing, walking on the beach, gallery hopping, cooking with fresh seafood, and exploring Cape Cod and the Islands from shore to shore.

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