Born in Earleigh Heights in Anne Arundel County, he was a 1936 graduate of Frederick Douglass High School. He earned a degree in history at what is now Morgan State University and a master's degree in divinity from Howard University. Family members said the end of World War II changed his plans to become a military chaplain. He was an active life member of the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity.
He joined the city schools system and taught at the Joseph C. Briscoe and Carver Vocational-Technical schools before becoming coordinator of community schools and going into administration. He retired in 1978.
During the summers, Mr. Watson worked with youth in the Baltimore Department of Recreation and Parks. He was also a founder of the James Mosher Little League. He was honored for his years of service at Martin's West two years ago.
Mr. Watson enjoyed exercise. He also played golf and read, and joined friends for pinochle games at the Druid Hill YMCA. He was also a King David Lodge 32nd-Degree Prince Hall Mason.
He was a member Emmart's United Methodist Church in Woodlawn.
Services will be held at 11 a.m. Oct. 29 at Sharp Street United Methodist Church, Dolphin and Etting streets.
Survivors include two sons, Edward Z. Watson III and Anthony Francis Watson, and a daughter, Adrienne Kathryn Watson, all of Baltimore; six grandchildren; and a great-grandson. His wife of 57 years, Bernice Calverta Francis, died in 2001.