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William Eaton (1607 - 1672)

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William Eaton
Born in Dover, Kent, Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married in Thanet, Kent, Englandmap
Descendants descendants
Died in Reading, Middlesex, Massachusettsmap
Eaton-129 created 14 Sep 2010 | Last modified | Last edit: 29 Aug 2017
22:23: Joe Cochoit edited the Biography for William Eaton. [Thank Joe for this | 1 thank-you received]
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Categories: Puritan Great Migration.

The Puritan Great Migration.
William Eaton migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
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Name: William Eaton
of Reading, Massachusetts


Baptized: 26 September 1607 at the parish of St. Mary's in Dover, co. Kent, England.[1] [2]
(Assuming his identification as a son of Peter Eaton is correct.)
Gave his age as about 54 in March 1658.
Gave his age as about 60 in November 1667.
Gave his age as about 62 in 1669.
Notes on origins: William Eaton is usually said to be a son Peter Eaton of Dover, co. Kent. This not conclusively proven though the identification would seem likely. Ages from depositions would estimate his birth as about 1607, William son of Peter was born in September 1607. No other candidates have been found parishes around Dover, Staple or Sandwich in Kent. DNA studies have proven that William Eaton of Reading was an extremely near relative of John Eaton of Dedham who would be his first cousin.


On a roll or list of names dated 11 May 1637 of those who had obtained Certificates as having taken the Oath of Allegiance and Supremacy and who had taken passage from the Port of sandwich in the County of Kent for the American plantations:[3]
Wm Eaton of Staple husbandman & Martha his weif. Children: John Martha and Albe. Servant: Jonas Eaton.
They are often said to have arrived in New England on the Hercules and Sandwich, however, the NEHGR article gives two reconstructed passenger lists. The first list is for the Hercules and Sandwich while the second ship is unnamed. The Eatons were on this unnamed second ship.

Marriage and Children

Married: Martha Jenkins on 28 January 1627/8 in the parish of St. John in Thanet, co. Kent, England.[4]
Children of William Eaton and Martha Jenkin:[4]
  • Mary Eaton. bp. 28 December 1628 at St. john's in Thanet; Buried 20 July 1634 at Staple, Kent, England.
  • Martha Eaton. bp. 19 September 1630 at Staple. She married 1st Richard Oldham about 1650; she married second Thomas Brown on 7 October 1656 in Cambridge. She died before 13 May 1673.
  • Alba Eaton.
  • William Eaton.
  • John Eaton.
  • Daniel Eaton.
  • Mary Eaton.

Death and Will

Died: 13 May 1673 in Reading, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts.[5]
He left a will dated 26 September 1672 and proved on 11 June 1673.[6] In it he names his wife Martha, eldest son John and his children, son Daniel and his children, daughter Mary, son-in-law Thomas Brown, and son-in-law Thomas Moore.


Footnotes and Citations:
  1. St. Mary's, Dover Parish Registers
  2. Reed, John Eaton Report
  3. NEHGR vol. 75 p. 217-222.
  4. 4.0 4.1 NEHGR vol. 76, p.54-75.
  5. Reading VR, p. 516.
  6. Middlesex County, MA: Probate file number 6819.
Source list:
  • New England Historical and Genealogical Register, vol. 76 no. 1 (January 1922):54-75. Genealogical Research in England: The Jenkin Family, by Eben Putnam.</ref>
  • New England Historical and Genealogical Register, vol. 75 no. 3 (July 1921):217-222. Two early Passenger Lists, by Eben Putnam. LINK
  • Reed, Paul C. F.S.A.G. The English Ancestry of John1 Eaton, of Dover, Kent, and Dedham, Massachusetts. Research report commissioned by Joe Cochoit and the Eaton Family Association (2003). Available on the Eaton Family Association website (paid).
  • Parish registers for St. Mary-the-Virgin Church, Dover, 1558-1951 (Family History Library film #1,836,141).
  • Reading. Thomas W. Baldwin compiler. Vital Records of Reading, Massachusetts, to the Year 1850. (Boston: NEHGS, 1912):516. LINK
  • Middlesex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1648-1871. online database of original images. Probate file number 6819.
Acknowledgements (contributors):
  • Profile sourcing and improvement by Joe Cochoit. Please contact before making significant changes.

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No known carriers of William's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.

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