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Sylvanus Packard, son of Lemuel Packard and Sarah Hunt, was born in North Bridgewater, Massachusetts on April 6, 1789. From 1804-1810, he was apprenticed to his brother, a merchant, in Boston. In 1810 he established his own business which he led successfully until his business partner caused its collapse in 1840. Packard married Sarah Freeman from New York on July 11, 1818 in Schenectady, New York, and with the help of his wife, revived his business after its collapse. In the 1840s and 1850s he worked as a cotton broker in Boston. Packard donated to various charities related to the Universalist church (he was long connected with the School Street Church) and accumulated a vast fortune of several hundred thousand dollars before he died in 1860.
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