According to the Notable Names Database “William Colgate came to America with his family when he was a teenager, and settled in Baltimore, where he worked as an apprentice to a soap-boiler. Eventually relocating to New York City, he worked as a candle maker, and in 1806 he went into business for himself, selling soap, candles, and starch. After several years of financial struggle, William Colgate & Company prospered in the 1820s selling Windsor toilet soaps and Pearl starch. Thirteen years after his death in 1857, the company began selling toothpaste, and in 1893 it introduced toothpaste in a tube.”
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