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Jim Thorpe in Carbon County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Self Made Man

View his Life from his Home

 

1805 - 1879

 
The Self Made Man Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
1. The Self Made Man Marker
Inscription. First Marker:
The Self Made Man
"...there is no distinction to which any young man may not aspier, and with energy, diligence, intelligence, and virtue, obtain."
From Asa Packer's 1867 biography
"The Rich Men of the World and How they Gained their Wealth"

Born to humble beginnings, Asa Packer came here from Mystic, Connecticut. Packer's successful ventures in canal boat building, farming and running a general store provided the money to build the Lehigh Valley Railroad.

Mr. Packer's interest in his fellowman's well being led him into politics and public service. He served as Carbon County judge for five years. Later, he served in the Pennsylvania State Legislature and two terms as United States Congressman. At the Democratic National Convention of 1868, Packer stood proud as a presidential nominee. During his 74 years, Packer gave millions of dollars to charitable causes. His single greatest act of generosity founded Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA. The Packer children continued his legacy building hospitals, schools, churchs, and fire companies throughout the area and beyond.

In 1912, with the death of Mr. Packer's last child, Mary Packer Cummings, the Borough of Mauch Chunk inherited the home and its contents. The Jim Thorpe Lions Club opened the home to the public
View his Life from his Home Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
2. View his Life from his Home Marker
in 1956, overseeing the landmark property ever since.

Second Marker:
View his Life from his Home
"I mention these circumstances as an encouragement of what may be accomplished by a life of integrity, energy and devotion to business."
Matthew S. Henry, 1860, History of the Lehigh Valley

1. Lehigh Valley Railroad - Founded by Asa Packer on the eastern bank of the Lehigh River, it lies at the base of Bear Mountain. Once essential for moving coal from Pennsylvania's southern anthracite fields, Norfolk Southern now runs freight on the line, essential to their success.

2. Lehigh Canal - The Lehigh Coal and Navigation company originally employed Packer as a canal boat builder. An early means for shipping coal, today the Canal and adjacent Trail are part of a major preservation effort.

3. New Jersey Central Railroad Station - Once Packer's rival, the 1888 NJCRR passenger train station is now a Visitor Information Center and Landing for the Delaware and Lehigh National and State Heritage Corridor.

4.LC&N Building - Offices of the Lehigh Valley Railroad and the Lehigh Coal & Navigation Company were located here. Richly ornamented with terra cotta masonry, today it houses senior citizens.

5. Carbon County Courthouse - Mr. Packer served as county judge in the original wooden courthouse. Later, the
The National Historic Landmark Plaque image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
3. The National Historic Landmark Plaque
legendary Molly Maquires heard their death sentence in the main courtroom. The current courthouse, third on this site, was built in 1893.

6. St. Mark's Church - Packer was instrumental in building this church and served as vestryman for over 40 years. Many family memorial gifts adorn this fine Gothic Church where the Packer family worshipped.

7. Historic Stone Row - Packer constructed sixteen stone row homes in 1848 as company housing for his employees. Unique shops and residents preserve them for future generations.

Nearby National Historic Landmark plaque
Asa Packer Mansion
has been designated a
National Historic Landmark
This property possesses national significance in commemorating the history of the United States of America

Built in 1860 for industrialist and philanthropist Asa Packer, this house is one of the Nation's most perfectly preserved Italian villas

1985
National Park Service
United States Department of the Interior

 
Marker series. This marker is included in the National Historic Landmarks marker series.
 
Location. 40° 51.832′ N, 75° 44.27′ W. Marker is in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, in Carbon County. Marker is on Packer Hill Road west of East Calawissa Street.
National Historic Landmark plaque and The Self Made Man Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
4. National Historic Landmark plaque and The Self Made Man Marker
Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1 Packer Hill Road, Jim Thorpe PA 18229, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Soldiers and Sailors Monument (here, next to this marker); Carbon County (a few steps from this marker); Packer Mansion (within shouting distance of this marker); Anthracite (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); From Mountain to Market (about 300 feet away); Mauch Chunk Railroad Station (about 300 feet away); Molly Maguire Executions (approx. half a mile away); Colonel Jacob Weiss Monument (approx. 2.5 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Jim Thorpe.
 
More about this marker. There are two pictures on The Self Made Man Marker. The main picture is of engineers posing near a train engine of the Lehigh Valley Railroad. The caption reads, "Asa Packer founded the Lehigh Valley Railroad. LVRR Engine No. 72, "Montana", was built in 1865." There is also a portrait of "Asa Packer: Industrialist, statesman, and philanthropist."
 
Also see . . .  Asa Packer at FindAGrave.com. (Submitted on July 14, 2011, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.)
 
Categories. EducationIndustry & CommerceNotable PersonsPolitics
 
View his Life from his Home Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
5. View his Life from his Home Marker
The Asa Packer Mansion image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
6. The Asa Packer Mansion
The Harry Packer Mansion, next door image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 20, 2010
7. The Harry Packer Mansion, next door
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,156 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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