Letter from the Director

Karen Totman - Executive Director

I feel challenged to write the “perfect” Letter from the Director. I want my letter to tell the story of Snow Farm, and I want it to inspire you to come and take a class or two this year. I also want you to get a sense of the “spirit” that is Snow Farm. Maybe some would say it’s a simple exercise in marketing, but I believe it’s more than that, because I really want you to come here and I really want you to experience everything this wonderful Program has to offer.

In 1894 Fannie and Dwight Clary moved from their home in the village of Williamsburg to the farm now known as Snow Farm: The New England Craft Program. They farmed this property for many years, but what sets them apart from the typical 19 to 20th Century farm family was their level of interest in knowing people from every imaginable background. Fannie was a psychic, writer, homemaker and politician who hosted a parade of well-known authors, artists, political leaders, activists, philanthropists, business executives and intellectuals. Fannie and Dwight took in “Fresh Air” children in the summer, many of them being ill patients of a doctor from Boston, and boarded Smith College students during the school year. She and Dwight eventually ran what would now be referred to as a Bed and Breakfast. Some of the most famous movers and shakers of their time stayed right here at Snow Farm. Can you imagine what the dinner table conversations were like? One of their guests, Silas Snow from Boston, fell in love with and married their daughter Francis in 1909. Dwight and Fannie left their daughter and her husband the Clary property which is how the Clary farm became known as the Snow farm.

Although over the years, many changes have happened to this property, (including transforming it into a Craft Education Program), I believe Fannie and Dwight Clary, more than 100 years ago, set the stage for what again has become a place that welcomes and embraces teenagers and adults from every walk of life. The students, who come to Snow Farm to learn a new craft or increase their skill, take away more than sound technique. They leave here having become part of our community – meaningful relationships between instructor, staff and fellow students, and bonds formed from communing with like-minded individuals. In this way, Snow Farm continues the Clary legacy of an environment full of creativity, learning, intellectual development, hard work, self-expression, caring and hospitality. The discussions around the dining room tables at Snow Farm could certainly rival those in the Clary home over a century ago. This property-this community-these buildings- teaming with individual stories, are continually providing the backdrop for personal growth, the creation of memories and the evolving legacy of the “spirit” at Snow Farm.

The Snow Farm Administrative Staff, Janet, Christine, Steve, Sam and I, extend a heartfelt invitation to experience Snow Farm. We would love to have you attend one of our classes or facilitate the experience for that artistic teenager in your life. If you are a returning Snow Farmer, we hope you enjoy the improvements we’ve made over the winter, (we are always trying to make things better for you), and we look forward to sitting with you and catching up.



Karen Totman, Director