Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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APPLETON, William, merchant, born in Brook-field, Massachusetts, 16 November 1786; died in Longwood, near Boston, 20 February 1862. He was a son of the Rev. Joseph Appleton, of Brookfield, received an academic education, and at the age of fifteen became a clerk in a country store at Temple. In 1807 he went to Boston, where for over fifty years he was a successful merchant, giving also much attention to banking and financial operations. He was president of the United States branch bank from 1832 to 1836, and was also president of the provident institution for savings and the Massachusetts general hospital. He gave $30,000 to the last-named institution, and was noted for his benevolence. He was elected as a Whig to congress, serving from 1851 to 1855. and again was a member in the special session from 4 July to 6 August 1861, after which he resigned.
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