Old Families of Southeastern Massachusetts

Ancestry of Nathaniel Reynolds Packard, 2d of Brockton Massachusetts

Nathaniel Reynolds Packard, 2d, who belonged to the older school of shoe manufacturers in Brockton, and whose industry and integrity, coupled with his executive ability and iron determination, won him success in his undertakings, died at Cory Hill hospital, Boston, Nov. 6, 1908, aged seventy-five years. He was a descendant of

Samuel Packard, the first of the name in America, who with his wife and child came from Windham, near Hingham, England, in the ship “Diligence,” of Ipswich, and settled first at Hingham, Mass., in 1638, thence removing to West Bridgewater, where he became one of the early settlers, and where he was a tavern-keeper; through his son

Zaccheus Packard and wife Sarah Howard

David Packard and wife Hannah Ames

William Packard and wife Sarah Richards

William Packard (2) and wife Hannah Reynolds

Sihon Packard and wife Abigail Scott

Oren Packard and wife Sally Skinner – the latter the parents of Nathaniel Reynolds Packard, 2d.

Sihon Packard, son of William (2) and Hannah (Reynolds) Packard, was married in 1794 to Abigail Scott, of Dedham. Their children were:

  1. Betsey Packard, who died single
  2. Joseph S. Packard
  3. Oren Packard, mentioned below
  4. Sihon Packard
  5. Isaac Packard
  6. Washburn Packard
  7. John Packard
  8. Nathaniel E. Packard
  9. David Packard
  10. Mary Packard, who died young.

Oren Packard, son of Sihon, was born in North Bridgewater, where he grew to manhood. He early began work at shoemaking, but later turned his attention to carpentering. He moved to Easton, Mass., and worked at his trade, and in time opened a wheelwright shop, a business he followed during the remainder of his life. He died at his home in Easton in 1858, aged fifty-eight years, and was buried there. In 1821 he married Sally Skinner, of Mansfield, Mass., and their nine children were:

  1. Sarah Packard, who married Caleb Mansfield, both now deceased
  2. Oren R. Packard, deceased
  3. Ezra Packard, who resides at Hammonton, N. J.
  4. Mary Packard, who married Alvin Vose, both deceased
  5. Abigail A. Packard, who married Andrew Gardner
  6. Nathaniel Reynolds Packard, mentioned below
  7. Alice Packard, who died in infancy
  8. George M. Dallas and James K. Polk, twins, both now deceased.

Mrs. Packard, the mother, died in 1886, aged eighty-six years.

Nathaniel Reynolds Packard was born in what was then North Bridgewater, now Brockton, Sept. 13, 1833. He was quite young when his parents moved to Easton, Mass., and in the schools of South Easton he obtained his education. He worked with his father in the latter’s wheelwright shop, where he continued until of age, going then to Wareham, Mass., and working as a millwright for some time. In 1860 he began to learn the shoe cutting trade in a shoe factory at South Easton, and after working at it some time started in shoe manufacturing on his own account, erecting a small shop in Easton. Success attended his efforts from the start, but owing to a dispute with the town officials of Easton over the taxes on his property he determined to leave that town. Accordingly, as he saw no chance of coming to a satisfactory understanding with the officials, he secured several yoke of oxen, and loading his factory on wheels moved it to North Bridgewater, locating on Centre and Montello streets, near where the railroad depot now is. The Easton town officials objected to the removal of the factory, and endeavored to get an in-junction to prevent Mr. Packard from using the streets for the removal, but he was a man of quick decision and determination, and moved the building while the injunction was being procured. He began the manufacture of shoes in Brockton (then North Bridgewater) in 1869, and by diligent effort and careful workmanship built up a successful business. When the grade crossings were abolished in Brockton, he sold his property to the railroad, and located at Centre and Bay streets. For a short time he was a partner with Capt. E. B. Grover, and for four years was associated with the Hurley Brothers. He became one of the best known shoe manufacturers in New England, and was in active business up to the time of his death. He was highly esteemed, and was a man of strong principles, doing the right always as he saw it. No argument prevailed if he once determined upon a certain line of action, for he could not be swerved.

For several years prior to his demise Mr. Packard was in poor health, and his death occurred at Cory Hill hospital, Boston, Nov. 6, 1908; he was buried in Union cemetery, Brockton, where some years before he had erected a fine monument to mark the last resting place of himself and wife. His home was at No. 318 Main street, where he had built a handsome residence. Mr. Packard was very fond of animals, especially horses, and always had some thoroughbreds in his stable. Fraternally he was a Mason, belonging to Paul Revere Lodge, A. P. & A. M., Satucket Chapter, E. A. M., and Bay State Commandery, K. T., all of Brockton. He was a member of the Merchants’ and Manufacturers’ Club, of Brockton, and was a stockholder in the Brockton Agricultural Society, taking a deep interest in the Brockton fairs.

In 1858 Mr. Packard married Juliette V. Thayer, who was born at Easton Feb. 20, 1839, daughter of Charles and Almira (Bryant) Thayer. She died Oct. 17, 1887, and was buried in Union cemetery, Brockton. No children were born to them.

Mrs. Abigail Ann (Packard) Gardner, only surviving sister of Mr. Packard, was born in Easton, Mass., and was married to Andrew Gardner, who died in Brockton, Oct. 12, 1884. She now occupies the home of Mr. Packard (in Brockton), to whom she was much attached. Her only son, A. Graham Gardner, who was born at North Bridgewater (now Brockton), has long been a shoe operator: he married Ida Osborne, of Brockton, and (second) Almira Bird. He makes his home with his mother.

Representative Men and Old Families of Southeastern Massachusetts: containing historical sketches of prominent and representative citizens and genealogical records of many of the old families. 3 Volumes. Beers & Chicago. 1912.

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