Generation No. 1
Descendants of James Eaton
and Betsey Howard Eaton, my 3rd Great Grandparents
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
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,
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
My 2nd GG HIRAM EATON, CAPT.,
b. 26 Dec 1814 in Maine; d. 23 Jan 1884, Searsport ME, 69 yrs 28 dys.
On April 2nd in 1843, he married
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
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.
HIRAM AND NANCY
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.
(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
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
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.
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.
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
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.
decade has passed, the 1870 Census is taken and
Hiram is now 56 and farming. Son
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.
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,
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.
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
3) WILLIAM M. EATON, JR.
This Jr. was "Uncle Willie" who used to love to eat his peas off a knife!
See more at: http://www.snippetbiographies.blogspot.com/2012/11/eat-your-peas-with-knife-william-eaton.html
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, NY.
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
(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
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
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
For period of time during his life Lin lived in a barn and was not
Their daughters were Eugenie "Jeannie" Kneeland Cathers and
Hattie May Kneeland Lee. Neither had
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
Searsport: James/Nellie and Lillian together. Dates
Generation No. 4 - My Direct Line
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.
married again in two years on November 16, 1904 to
EMILY PRUDENCE BEACH, daughter of ORIN
EMILY PENDLETON. She
was born 25 Sep 1873 in Waltham, MA or Belmont MA, and died 1940 in Searsport,
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.
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
First Child of
LESTER EATON and EMILY
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
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
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
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.
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
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
"Margie" Emma Bennett
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
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
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
Rudolf Bennett and his maternal grandfather,
Lester Clarence Eaton. He was born in 1925 at the
family farm in Searsport.
a lengthy time in the Navy, he married a woman named
Hazel _________. She had three daughters, whom he loved
dearly as his own.
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!
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
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
share information.... Questions? Comments?
WWI Draft Registration Card for Charles Albert
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
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.