On August 10, 1888, as indicated in the article quoted above, the city of Brockton was packed with Packards, hustling and bustling for the 250th anniversary of Samuel Packard coming to the shores of America. Then “America” (not called that at the time of course) was only the burgeoning English colony of Massachusetts Bay with the rest of the land populated with millions of indigenous peoples. Among those listed, Cyrus was not among them, a good number of which seem to reside in Massachusetts. Some of these individuals are likely in my lineage but it would require more digging to determine which ones.
The article itself notes that De Witt Clinton Packard, the Brockton City Clerk, held the opening speech, with the article claiming that Samuel Packard was a “brave old pilgrim who left his pleasant home in Wymondham, England,” and the staying power of Packard in the “old colony” (Massachusetts). Furthermore, B. Winslow Packard was said to be the “historian of the Packard family” who claimed that Samuel Packard’s 11 of 12 children married and had huge families. Interestingly, Bradford Kingman who would later write a history of Bridgewater, was seemingly a descendant of Samuel Packard. The article then summarized the supposed history of Samuel Packard’s coming to the “New World” and out-pouring of his family in Massachusetts. The article ended by saying that
The family tree [from Samuel Packard onward] was planted, spread out its branches in every direction, until now lineal descendants of this family are found in nearly every state and territory in the union.
While the claims they make about family history are questionable looking at them now, since genealogical practices were not as great as they currently are with not as many primary sources available to those researching their families, it is still worth recounting this gathering. A publication about it was also put out by the Packard Memorial Association titled “Celebration of the 250th anniversary of the landing of Samuel Packard in this country.”  The book describes how in 1887 there were meetings of Packard family members in preparation for the big gathering the next year, the creation of the Packard Memorial Association, along with a “Committee of Arrangements,” “Literary Committee,” and “Reception Committee.” It was also noted that the August 1888 meeting recounted by the Boston Herald was in the Exhibition Building at the Agricultural Fair Grounds, with varied meats, corn fritters, mashed potatoes, fruits, and desserts served at the gathering. It is worth also quoting from the opening address of the gathering by B. Winslow Packard:
…that brave old pilgrim [Samuel Packard] who left his pleasant home in Wymondham in England, and…braved the dangers of the seas to find asylum in the new world…plain Samuel Packard, inkeeper, farmer, and constable, is ancestor enough. His descendants…have made the name [Packard] respected in several communities where they have cast their lot…this study of family history is an elevating pursuit. To find no reverence for the past, with all its precious and inspiring memories and lessons, is to ignore one of the great sources of influence and power
Silas S. Packard’s address, after that of the mayor of Brockton was notable in that it garnered laughs from the crowd, which is not surprising because it does give me a bit of a chuckle to be honest:
…if you detect me firing into the ground you will understand that I don’t dare aim too high for feat that I might hit a Packard…I am glad to know that Brockton was once owned by the Packards. It was over a hundred years ago…when the town lots were not quite as valuable. When they began to be valuable…the Packards sold out. That is a Packard way…If I wanted to borrow money I don’t think I would go to a Packard.
And then before the hymn was sung the President of the Association said “If you are all Packards you can all sing” which was met with laughter. After summarizing, again, the Packard family history, there is a rhyming poem that brings together the Packard family history as they saw it at the time (which I found in my family history) is at best partially accurate):
In sixteen hundred thirty-eight,
In Massachusetts Bay was cast
The anchor of the “Diligent,”
All the ocean’s dangers passed
One hundred thirty-three ’tis said.
Upon this vessel came,
Besides the crew and captain brave–
John Martin was his name
April the twenty-sixth they sailed
From Gravesend harbor wide;
And until August tenth they braved
The perils of the tide
Then Samuel, with his wife and child
Set foot upon the shore
To help to clear the wilderness,
And did return no more.
Ere long he sought a settlement
And home in Old Bridgewater,
And there he found, besides a home
A husband for his daughter–
For Thomas sought Elizabeth,
And she wed consented,
And as an Alger lived for years
Both happy and contented.
The second child, in Hingham born,
Was for father named,
And as ensign he held rank
Is by records claimed.
He married of the Lothrop stock
A maiden of his choice
And had six children born of her
To make his heart rejoice.
They had all families but one–
Elizabeth by name–
And none, as far as I learn
Ere put their birth to shame.
The third son, Zaccheus, too we find
In Hingham woods was born,
And doubtless with his father wrought
In raising Indian corn
At any rate, he with him lived
And came to the man’s estate,
And the child of the neighbor John
He made his lifetime’s mate.
He sought for Sarah Howard’s hand,
And got both hand and heart
And with them got a share of land–
‘Tis said a goodly part.
Nine children blessed their married state,
And all grew up to see
A goodly share of Packards flock
Round the ancestral tree,
Eight sons, and daughters only one
To change the Packard name,
The name of Edson that she chose
Is not unknown to fame.
The fourth child, Thomas, lived and died
Near his father’s home
Had one son Joseph, for his cheer
Who never far did roam;
Not but he had the enterprise
And means to emigrate
For when his father made his will
He left him his estate.
The fifth child, John, in Weymouth born
In sixteen fifty-five,
Had also but a single son;
But many are alive
Who trace their origin to him
And Judith, his good wife–
Of Willis stock a good descent
You may just bet your life
They make up sterling value up
What they in numbers lack
And proudest of ancestry
Of any looking back.
The sixth child, born of Weymouth, too
Married, ’tis said, the daughter
Of one John Kingman, who soon came
To live in old Bridgewater
This was good blood, you will agree,
The Packard-Kingman kind–
Perhaps a better in our race
We could not easily find.
Nathaniel had a family
Of thirteen girls and boys–
Enough most surely to fill up
The measure of home joys.
A goodly race from them have sprung
Of noble men and true.
And women — well, I’ll only say,
As good as I e’er knew;
Accomplished, fair and full of grace
And goodness, I am sure,
I see not why their memories
Should not be made secure.
The seventh child of Samuel
Was born in the old “West”
And went to Weymouth for her spouse;
Quite likely she thought best
The Phillips family, we find,
Had early settled there,
And Mary went with willing heart
Their earthly lot to share
Her children five made good, we see,
The promise of their youth,
And many of their race now walk
The ways of right and truth.
The eighth child, Hannah, married well,
And of a goodly kind
And her descendants, numerous now–
The Randall race we find;
Four boys, three girls, her children seven,
Have served their time and age,
And left of thoughts and words and deeds
A noble heritage!
The ninth child, Israel, in his youth
Was to his county given,
And All the ties of home and friends
Were in its service riven.
He lives as one trooper brave
On History’s gathering page,
Revered his name by all our race,
By patriot and sage.
The tenth child, Jael, wife of Smith–
I’m glad to find ’twas John,
For now I can problem solve
Just where the Smiths hitch on.
He was not John Smith, you know,
That Pocahontas saved,
Nor that John Smith we all may know
Who wasn’t so well behaved;
But it was Taunton John of old,
A man of high degree,
Esteemed by all for wealth and worth,
And should be praised by me–
But most of all because he chose
A Packard for his wife
Perhaps he’d not better got
If he’d sought all his life.
The eleventh child, fair Deborah,
Born on the homestead old,
Married a Washburn of repute
And virtues manifold.
Six children made their household glad,
Who children had each one,
And looking on their history,
We may well say, “Well done!”
The twelfth child, and last we find
Of Samuel’s children dear,
Deliverance named, a Washburn wed,
And found had a home of cheer,
Made glad by seven boys and girls,
Not all whom were married,
But grew to man and womanhood
And for some reason tarried.
Now Samuel, our great ancestor,
Deserves a notice brief,
Because of those of whom I’ve sung
He father was, and chief.
He must have been a man of worth,
Though not a man of wealth;
He left his children all, no doubt,
Good counsel and good health.
He office held in office and state,
And doubtless used them well;
A breach of faith and trust reposed
No record lives to tell.
He died a Christian, full of years,
And buried was with care;
Few annals lived to tell the tale
Of when, or how, or where.
A monument he well deserves,
His mem’ry to enshrine,
And his descendants far and near
To rear one could combine.
Upon his tablets let it bear
A record of his race,
And tell how many here to-day
Are gathered in this place
To celebrate his coming here,
In sixteen thirty-eight–
Two hundred fifty years ago–
Why should we longer wait?
The place he lived is well defined
The landmarks are not lost,
And I doubt not we can secure
A site at moderate cost.
And, too, her name who came with him,
The mother of our race,
Should stand to share his noble fame
When we his name shall trace;
For ’tis the mothers of our land,
As well as fathers brave,
That give the impress to the child
That grows our land to save.
That honored be our ancestors,
Of any clime and age,
And may the Pilgrim’s freedom be
Our lasting heritage!
The rest of the publication then goes back and forth about Packard family history, some saying that “it is a Packard history to honor the kindred,” and religious sayings. Later on all the names of the Packards who attended the gathering are listed.  Later the Packard Memorial Association resolved that:
…we cherish an affectionate regard and veneration for our ancestor, Samuel Packard…there should be a family gathering at or near the old homestead in West Bridgewater, Mass.
And they have their own seal:
The Packard Memorial Association seems to be onto something based on the maps provided by ancestry on their page about the Packard family name. According to internet searches, the book itself seems to be by (or compiled by) Bradford Kingman and the association seems to have ONLY produced this book, which some have been interested in recent years. The story continues.
 See pages 3-5, 6, 9-12, 15, 17,21, 25-33, 38, 43, 56-69 of the book itself.
 Perhaps a Wellcome T. Packard, in Canada, is one who is within the established lineage I talk about in my family history.