New England - Maine:   EATON and BENNETT

See also:
 Eaton Timeline

Click on any pictures outlined in blue for full size images    Updated Dec 2014

Family Farm on Turnpike Road in Searsport Maine


Generation No. 1

Descendants of James Eaton and Betsey Howard Eaton, my 3rd Great Grandparents


JAMES A.  EATON was born 1784 in Deer Island, Maine and died 30 Apr 1863 in Searsport ME at the age of 79. He married ELIZABETH "Betsy" HOWARD in 1808 in Deer Island. See thumbnail to right.  She was born 1793 in Maine, and died 14 Feb 1850 in Searsport ME; age 57. Buried at Bowditch Cemetery (Stones: "James Eaton died 4-30-1863 79 yrs. old";  "Elizabeth wife died 2-14-1850 57 yrs. old."  "Sarah daughter died 7-7-1853". Her cause of death was throat disease from which she suffered 4 days per the 1850 Federal Mortality Schedule:


Children of JAMES EATON and BETSY:

Great Uncle Otis Eaton, married Olive Soule Lufkin.

Great Aunt SARAH EATON, born 1829 in Searsport, died 7 July1853, age 24.

2nd Great Grandfather HIRAM EATON, CAPT., b. 26 Dec 1814 in Maine; d. 23 Jan 1884, Searsport ME.

At the time of the 1850 Census for Searsport, JAMES EATON was 65 and living with his son HIRAM EATON and daughter-in-law, Nancy A. Staples Eaton






Capt. Hiram Eaton's father, James A. Eaton, built the family farm on Turnpike Road.  It was then lived in by Hiram and Nancy, then Lester and Emily Prudence, then Esther and Charlie Bennett - then Esther and Austin Homer. My mom lived there at times and my parents brought me home from the hospital to this wonderful old home.  


Generations No. 2 and 3



b. 26 Dec 1814 in Maine; d. 23 Jan 1884, Searsport ME, 69 yrs 28 dys.

On April 2nd in 1843, he married my 2nd GG NANCY A. STAPLES who was 5 years his junior, being born 6 Jun 1819, Maine; Nancy died about one year after Hiram's death on 15 Feb 1885, Searsport, at 65 yrs 8 mos 9 days.

Hiram Eaton's Grave is in Bowditch Cemetery in Searsport, Maine: "Hiram Eaton, died 1/23/1884, Age 69 yr 28 ds."

Hiram's vessel as a captain was the schooner MATILDA, 1849-50 per Searsport Sea Captains by Col. Black, Penobscot Marine Museum, Searsport, Maine, page 85. 

In the front cover of the family bible  is the signature of Nancy A. Eaton - likely the bible of this Nancy.


1)  2nd GUncle WILLIAM M. EATON, CAPT., b. 27 Jun 1844, ME; d. 15 Jan 1890, Tampico Bay, Mexico; m. ANNA E. HARRIMAN, 1867; b. 1845, Arkansas; d. Unknown. 

Grave (or Memorial) of William M. Eaton is located in Maine:

Per Searsport Sea Captains, by Col. Black, Penobscot Marine Museum, Searsport, Maine (pg 87): The vessels which William captained were:

Vessels: Schooner Alfred F. Howe, 1865;

Schooner Eva Adell, 1867 (Note that this is the year that he and Anna married)

          Schooner W.W. Hungerford (lost under his command).

During the 1870 Census William listed his residence as his father's family; he was then a 26 year old Mariner, likely at sea; and his wife Anna E. is 25 and likely was staying with his family on the farm, although our ancestors were often together at sea as families.

2)  HARRIETT M. EATON, b. 29 Sep 1846, ME; d. Unknown; m. RALPH B. STAPLES ELLIS, CAPT.; b. 12 Aug 1839, ME; d. 05 Feb 1905, Brooklyn NY.   Ralph was 8 years her senior.  During the 1870 Census, it was noted that they lived next door to her parents, Hiram and Nancy Eaton. 

3)  NANCY ELIZABETH EATON, b. 19 Jul 1849; d. 1 Mar 1920; m.________ DOW. 

4)  MARY A. EATON, b. 18 Mar 1852, ME.; d. Dec 1908; m. LINDLEY MURRAY ("UNCLE LIN") KNEELAND, 11 Dec 1875; b. 11 Jan 1851, Me; d. 11 Sep 1931.  Lin was a seaman per the 1880 census.

5)  ABBA/ABBIE AMELIA  EATON b. 19 Aug 1858; d. 21 Aug 1864, She died about 3 months before Lester was born while her mother was carrying Lester.

6)  2nd GUncle JAMES S. EATON, b. 03 Mar 1861; d. 14 Apr 1939; m. NELLIE M. WISE, 7 Oct 1882; b. 1861; d. 1915.   Both are buried at Bowditch Cemetery in Searsport.

7)  GREAT GRANDFATHER LESTER CLARENCE EATON, b. 27 Jun 1864, Searsport, Maine; d. 2 Apr 1939, Searsport, Maine; m. (1 in 1888) SARAH (Sadie)  J.________,*  b. 11 Sep 1864; d. 27 Dec 1902; m. (2) EMILY PRUDENCE BEACH, 16 Nov 1904; b. 25 Sep 1873, Waltham, Mass. or Belmont Mass.; d. 1940, Searsport, Maine.  He was a farmer, following having worked at sea for a while.* Sadie and Lester had one child who did not survive or died young per the 1900 Census.

At the time of the 1860 Census for Searsport, HIRAM EATON was 45 and living with his wife, Nancy A. Eaton, who is 41.  Their children with them: William 15, Harriet 13, Nancy E 10, Mary 8, Abba A 2.  And Hiram's dad, JAMES EATON is living with them and farming at age 75.  Census taken 6/22/1860 in Searsport; M653-Roll 453.

After another decade has passed, the 1870 Census is taken and Hiram is now 56 and farming.  Son William is still listed with the family, but is 26 and a mariner who likely is at sea, perhaps with his wife, Anna E. who is 25 and listed with this household.   Harriet now 23 is married to Ralph S. Ellis, a Mariner, and they are listed as living next door to the family.   Nancy E. is 20 and has not yet married _____ Dow.  Mary is 18.  Abba A. who would be12 has died during this decade period, as has Hiram's dad, James Eaton.   New in this decade are the children, James S., age 9, and Lester C. Eaton (my direct line) who is 6.

By the 1880 Census in Searsport, Maine Hiram and Nancy are in their 60s and have only two teenagers living with them:  Lester C. Eaton who is 16 and his older brother James S. Eaton
who is nearing 20 years of age.

 Name  Relation Marital Status Gender Age Birthplace Occupation
Hiram EATON   Self   M   Male   65   ME  Farmer 
Nancy A. EATON   Wife   M   Female   60   ME  Keeping House 
James S. EATON   Son   S   Male   19   ME  At Home 
Lester C. EATON   Son   S   Male   16   ME  At Home 

Generation No. 4 - Sibling Lines



Children of WILLIAM M. EATON and ANNA E. HARRIMAN/Herriman are:

1) ABBIE A. EATON, born 1870.

2)  MARGARET M. EATON, born1873


This Jr. was "Uncle Willie" who used to love to eat his peas off a knife! 

See more at:




Harriet Eaton married RALPH B. STAPLES ELLIS, a Sea Captain, who was the son of LEVI  ELLIS and EDITH STAPLES ELLIS

Ralph was born August 12, 1839 in Maine and died on February 5,1905 in Brooklyn, NYThey had two sons, HENRY S. ELLIS born in 1871 and died June 1873...a mere toddler; and HENRY R. ELLIS, born several months later on March 7, 1874 in Maine.  He only lived to be a young boy - death came on August 1, 1881.


Nancy Elizabeth Eaton (sometimes called Elizabeth Nancy) married a man by the name of _______ Dow, and they had two children, Mabel and Lester (who married a Hannah). 

In the 1920 Census for Searsport, Nancy E. Dow is a widow and is residing at my family's home on Turnpike Road (one whose head of household in 1920 was Lester Eaton.)  Living with her is her son Chester Dow who is 34 and single.  But they are not the only ones living with Lester and Pru.  His brother James is there, along with William C. Pendleton a 74 year old boarder (likely family...must check that out) whose dates are 1845-1925 (see gravestone); and Lester's children Esther and Prudence Emily.  Also with them is Ernest Thompson the hired hand. 

  The first house when you turn onto this street (a dirt road for years and years)  is that of Pearly Andrews.  I recall my grandmother saying that Pearly's son, Florian, had a hankering for missing school - often.  And he always got a whooping.  My grandmother asked him one day why he kept cutting school when he knew he was going to be in trouble with his parents.  He replied, "What's a licking to a whole day off of school!"

1920 Census for Searsport


Lin and Mary A. Eaton Kneeland lived across the street from my family's farm on Turnpike Road in Searsport.  Lin lost his wife in 1908; he lived on till 1931.


In 1927 the house that Lin lived in burned down after Uncle Lin accidentally set fire to the home while burning boughs.  My mother was just a young child, but recalled this fire vividly!



For period of time during his life Lin lived in a barn and was not mentally stable.

Their daughters were Eugenie "Jeannie" Kneeland Cathers and Hattie May Kneeland Lee.  Neither had children.

I remember going to Jeannie and John's home in Mt. Dory area of Florida and recall their visits to my parents' home in Wethersfield, CT.  I recall Jeannie and John as tending to be collectors of "stuff" - to the point of having a small warehouse for storage.  My mom made a stew rich with vegetables during one of their visits to see us in Connecticut.  They loved it and talked about that meal for years!




Jim, who smoked a corn cob pipe, and his wife, Nellie, lived in Sandy Point ME.  It was here that his wife Nellie fell with a lamp and set their house on fire; she and her daughter died -- they burned to death.
Tombstones are in Bowditch Cemetery,
Searsport: James/Nellie and Lillian together. Dates inscribed.


Generation No. 4 - My Direct Line





Lester's first wife was named Sarah J. ________.  She was born September 11th in 1864 and died on the 27th of December, just after Christmas, in 1902. 

Lester married again in two years on November 16, 1904 to EMILY PRUDENCE BEACH, daughter of ORIN BEACH and EMILY PENDLETON. She was born 25 Sep 1873 in Waltham, MA or Belmont MA, and died 1940 in Searsport, Maine.

 Lester spent his last 5 years of life in bed - unknown why. He may have been anemic. He loved raw eggnogs and he was known to eat crayons - something in them was a craving during his long illness.  I have often wondered if the anemia caused some need for the crayon materials.  I have read that crayons from China (where the family members were often traveling to) contained lead; not known if true.  As a child my mother used to sit on his bed while her grandmother Emily Prudence Beach Eaton read to both of them.

A tombstone of a Lester/Prudence/Sarah is located at Bowditch Cemetery, Searsport, Maine.  (See column on right.)

Emily Prudence Beach Eaton: 

  Emily Prudence Beach's father, Orin Beach, was a seafarer on a ship. When the farm was built it was set so that he could see the Penobscot Bay from the house in Searsport.

Emily Prudence was a school teacher till she married; women "were not allowed" to teach after they became married. Emily had learned the skills needed to be a teacher at that time from the Normal School, Searsport, Maine.

Emily Prudence is the second wife of Lester C. Eaton. His first wife Sarah died (age 38) 2 years prior to the marriage of Lester and Emily which was on November 16, 1904. At the time of her marriage to Lester, Emily was 31 years old; Lester was 40 years old.

When Emily's child Esther Beach Eaton was born in 1906, Emily Prudence had to put her wrapped up in a warm oven to save her life!  Emily was then about 33 years old. When Prudence was born, Emily was 43 years old and Lester was 52 years old.

She was called "Pruddie" by some and "Aunt Pru" by others.

Generation No. 5


1)  ESTHER BEACH EATON, born on Ground Hog Day in 1906 on the family farm in  Searsport.; d. 12 Oct 1986, Asheville, North Carolina; m. (1) CHARLES ALBERT BENNETT, in 1924.  He was born on 21 Feb 1900 in Pittsfield (Somerset County), Maine; died on the 2nd day of  June 1983 in Penobscot, Maine; m. (2) AUSTIN LEE HOMER, 19 Oct 1938.  Austin was born in Bucksport Maine on September 27, 1889.  He registered for the WWI draft when he was 27 and living in Brewer Maine. At the time of the draft he was married to his first wife and worked as a laborer for Eastern Manufacturing Company in South Brewer. He was medium height and build, had blue eyes (guess Esther liked blue-eyed men!) and light brown hair.  He suffered from a stiff right foot. 

  Y Nana's birth certificate (Esther)

Austin lived in rural Hancock Maine in 1935.  By the 1940 census he and Esther were married and living on the family farm in Searsport, along with son Albert A. Homer who was 22 and born in Maine and Esther's mom, Emily Prudence Eaton who was 66 in 1940. Emily Prudence died in 1940 following the census. Esther and Austin lived in Verona at time of their marriage; Austin died 9 Mar 1960, Brewer, Maine.  I spent good times with them at their small Brewer home.  They had moved to this town to buy a small home after selling the family farm on Turnpike Road due to the illness of my Grandpa (step-grandpa) Austin, who died ultimately from leukemia at age 70.

Her first husband Charlie loved to hunt and fish.  He was a short man - about 5' 1" tall and a real woodsman.  When he was 18, he registered for the World War I draft.  It lists that he worked at a Lawrence Canning Company in Stockton, which is also the town that he lived in.  His mom, Mertie M. Bennett, also resided in the town, and it is presumed that he was still living at home.  Charlie has blue eyes, and light hair.   

  When Charlie and Esther were expecting their first child, many people from Maine were moving to California in hope of a brighter future.  Charlie and Esther chose to remain in Searsport, where he worked for the Maine Seaboard Paper Company as a crane operator.

Eventually they divorced.  Charlie married Anna Layton and then Margaret "Peg" Swett.   In his later years he lived in Bucksport. 

Esther and her second husband Austin loved to dance!  Esther was very healthy most of her life.  She broke an ankle in her older years and it just caused her to exercise more - through walking - to keep it limber.

Austin had two children by his previous marriage: James "Jimmy" Homer (married a Doris) and Albert Homer (died young).  Jimmy died of a heart attack. 

Second Child of LESTER EATON and EMILY BEACH:               Prudence as child

2) PRUDENCE EUGENIE EATON born August 16, 1916.  She married Paul H. GRAISBARY.   They did not have children. 

I recall visiting Prudence as a child.  She had a pet porcupine that came and went as it chose from her backyard.  It slept in a shed and she fed it regularly.  Unusual!  Nifty!  We could pet it, but only in one direction!


1900 U.S. Census ME, Waldo, Searsport; All Born: ME;
Series: T625  Roll: 649   Page: 157; Turnpike Road.
Lester is a dairy farmer; Chester is a carpenter at a shipyard 

Generation No. 6

On September 18, 1918 Charles Albert Bennett was single and 18 years old.  He registered for the WWI draft, listing his home as Stockton with his parents and his employment as the Lawrence Canning Company in Stockton.    He was short (about 5'1"), slender built, blue eyes, blond hair.

 In 1920 Charlie was 19 and living at home with his family in Stockton Springs.  He and his father Albert Bennett were laborers who were chopping wood as an occupation.

In the 1930 census Charlie was living on the Searsport farm with his wife Esther and working at the fertilizer plant.  He was 30 and she was 24.  My mom was just 5 and her brother Albert was 4 8/12.

ESTHER BEACH EATON who lived to be 80 and CHARLES ALBERT BENNETT who lived to be 83 had 3 children:



1)   Marjorie Emma Bennett, only daughter, born in1924.


2)  Albert Lester Bennett, eldest son, born in 1925 in Searsport.

3)  Gerald Charles Bennett born in 1930 in Searsport.






Generation No. 7


Marjorie "Margie" Emma Bennett was named for her cousin Doris Marjorie Beach. As a child, till about 12 or 13 years old, she was nicknamed by some children as "Taffy" due to her very light blond hair color. 

Marjorie  attended "Union School House" in Searsport Maine and then went to the "Old  High School" where she was the librarian every year.  During the summers she would swim in the waters of the Penobscot Bay and in the winters she would ice skate at the Mill Stream and then get toasty by the bonfires.  She and her brothers or her friends would also often walk to the roller skating rink in Stockton Springs from Searsport!  Margie graduated from the high school in Searsport during war time.  The class consisted of 9 students, of which she was the Valedictorian!  When she graduated she went to work for the Principal's wife at the bank on East Main Street. She had previously worked in the dry cleaner's shop and the principal got her out of the cleaner's job and into the bank job.  She also had worked while in high school at the local sardine factory.  She never ate sardines again!

She attended the Second Congregational Church in Searsport and would walk to the church with with her grandmother Emily Prudence. The church had beautiful windows and was nicely cool inside.  There  was a "Boston Boat" from Searsport to Boston that she, her Mom and her grandmother used to take on occasion.  She also helped her family keep the graves and grounds at Bowditch Cemetery cleaned.

Margie was an avid reader and there were many books on the farm due to Grandmother Emily Prudence having been a teacher.  As a young child she loved to play "school" with the many books from her grandmother's teaching days. She read and had the original Tarzan series of books and enjoyed Black Beauty, the Dottie Dimple and Little Pruddie books, and later on Little Women by Louisa Alcott.   She worked in the library at the Searsport High School for two years and "read everything!"


Margie read all the Pearl S. Buck books regarding life in China. At that time, parents had to give children written permission to read the Buck books!  Interesting considering that many Searsport Sea Captains were involved with the China trade.

At one point Margie lived in Bucksport for a while where she attended her Freshman Year at a bigger school. She walked 5 miles one way to school. She was often able to get rides with people heading to and from the Mill. If she got out of school in time to catch the 4 pm Mill shift change, she could get a ride, otherwise she walked.

She moved back to the family farm in Searsport following her grandmother's funeral. Anna was no longer married to her dad Charlie and Charlie was absolutely terrified of raising a girl by himself - he made her brother Albert go with Margie everywhere!  

On a Christmas Eve in 1944 she married Robert Earle Fuller of the Southworth family in Belfast and the Murray family in Brooks Maine. They had met at a dance.  Their favorite song was White Christmas by Bing Crosby.  Bob was born 19 Feb 1922 in Skowhegan, ME, and died 20 Dec 1999 in Melbourne, FL.  They had two children.  Note:  The ashes of Bob and Margie Fuller were strewn upon the Atlantic Ocean upon their request, as arranged by the funeral service.

Robert Earle Fuller was born in Skowhegan Maine.  When Percy Fuller adopted him, he took on the name of Fuller legally.  This marriage, however, did not last as family stories relay a difficult marriage.  Bob Fuller, and Bobby by his mom through most of his life, lived in Maine, then Connecticut and then Florida.  Margie and his children traveled to each new destination and in the end, Bob's mother and Margie's mother joined them in Florida, along with Bob's Aunt Jane Southworth and her partner, John Edward Dionne.

When Bobby was growing up, this is the house (recent picture, of course, does not reflect its facade or color exactly during the 30s and 40s) which is located at 55 High Street in Belfast.
This is from a Trulia listing in 2012.  This is the same house as listed in the 1940 Census.

ALBERT LESTER BENNETT, was named after his paternal grandfather, Albert Rudolf Bennett  and his maternal grandfather, Lester Clarence Eaton.   He was born in 1925 at the family farm in Searsport.  





After a lengthy time in the Navy, he married a woman named Hazel _________.  She had three daughters, whom he loved dearly as his own.  After his retirement from the United States Navy, he worked as a construction foreman building cliffside homes on the west coast.

                                          Albert and Hazel Bennett

 Albert passed away in November 2010.  His daughter Birdi has sent the following items to add to the family history.  Thanks for sharing, Birdi!

    Letter from Harry Truman and Flag

Lunch with "the boys" - Albert is, of course, the man in the middle! 

Albert Bennett's Death Certificate: Albert died on November 15, 2009 at 8:35 am at the age of 84 years.  He died in Kennewick, Washington.


GERALD CHARLES BENNETT, was born on Margie's birthdate (September19th) when his sister was 6 years old.  What a nice birthday gift!  I have noted that some records indicate that he was born on September 25!  Hummmm.

Albert, Gerald, and Marjorie Bennett
Gerry married Bonnie ________ in Hartford CT.  They had 6 children.

Gerald died in Miami, Florida 30 Aug 1979 and is buried in Kendall Florida. 


He died of lung cancer contracted from working with asbestos in the Navy shipyards.




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WWI Draft Registration Card for Charles Albert Bennett

Grave of Sarah, first wife of Lester Eaton

Grave of  Lester Eaton

Graves of  Hiram and Nancy Eaton


Esther Eaton at 3


Esther Eaton Bennett Homer on Family Farm

Esther, Margie, Bob

Margie and Great Grandson Cutting Up!

Margie and Bob Fuller

WWI Reg. Card for
Austin Lee Homer

Burdines in downtown  Ft. Lauderdale, FL where Margie Fuller worked part-time for many years and enjoyed it very much.

The following picture is from Facebook for the Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport Maine.  This is a sardine factory, and this is what Marjorie Bennett did for a living, in the summers I think.

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