Francis E. Bowker Oral History Interview

March 14, 2001
Oral History #OH0205
Sugg, H. A. I.; Bowker, Francis E., 1917-
Physical description
0.005 Cubic Feet, 1 audiocassette, 1.5 hours, no transcription
Preferred Citation
Francis E. Bowker Oral History Interview (#OH0205), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions

Biographical/historical information

Captain Bowker's maritime career began in the 1930s, sailing a three-masted schooner off Nova Scotia. His second ship was a five-masted schooner, of which he gives an excellent description in the interview. In 1941 he went to officer's school and became a 3rd mate. He was still on schooners during the early part of World War II and discusses being stopped by the U.S. Navy to have the ship's cargo inspected. Later in the war he served on a tanker where he was exposed to toxic gas fumes. He was hospitalized for three months, whereupon his merchant marine career ended when it was discovered he had permanent lung damage.

After his merchant marine career ended, he became very involved with Sea Scouts (which included Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts), taking them on sailing adventures in two-masted schooners.

Administrative information
Source of acquisition

Gift of Francis E. Bowker

Processing information

Encoded by Apex Data Services

Copyright notice

Repository does not own copyright to the oral history collection. Permission to cite, reproduce, or broadcast must be obtained from both the repository and the participants in the oral history, or their heirs.

General note


Key terms
Personal Names
Bowker, Francis E., 1917-
Family Names
Bowker family
Corporate Names
Edna Hoyt (Schooner)
Schooners--United States
Sea Scouts--United States
Tankers--United States
World War, 1939-1945