Edmund Snow (1761-1843)

85 Main Street

EDMUND SNOW. About 1785 Edmund Snow began the manufacturer in Leicester, Massachusetts, of hand cards for the carding of cotton and wool. A year later, Pliny Earle started working for him. The latter, shortly after establishing a similar manufacture of his own at Leicester, was later to become distinguished as the man who made the cards for the Slater Mill, which made the first cotton spun by machinery in America. Snow moved up to Peterborough and established a business for the manufacture of cards for wool, and probably cotton, in the basement of the old house at 85 Main Street, which he is reported to have built about 1797. This is the oldest house now standing on its original site in the village; reference is made to it in another chapter. These cards had wooden backs upon which was attached a sheet of leather, with holes pricked through the leather to carry the bent wires which were an essential part of the cards. These did not differ very much from the cow card still used for cleaning cattle. Snow continued his business here in Peterborough until about 1810, when he removed to Amherst, New Hampshire, and later to Lowell, where he established the Lowell Machine Works, which was an important factor in making machinery for the textile industry. He became one of the leading citizens of Lowell.

SOURCE: History of Peterborough, New Hampshire (1954), Vol I, pages 405.