Welcome! I really enjoy exchanging information with people and hope this blog will help with that. I am not an expert and I consider most of my research as a work in progress. Some of the surnames I'm researching:

Many old Cape families including Kelley, Eldredge/idge, Howes, Baker, Mayo, Bangs, Snow, Chase, Ryder/Rider, Freeman, Cole, Sears, Wixon, Nickerson.
Many old Plymouth County families including Washburn, Bumpus, Lucas, Cobb, Benson.
Johnson (England to MA)
Corey (Correia?) (Azores to MA)
Booth, Jones, Taylor, Heatherington (N. Ireland to Quebec)
O'Connor (Ireland to MA)
My Mayflower Ancestors (only first two have been submitted/approved by the Mayflower Society):
Francis Cooke, William Brewster, George Soule, Isaac Allerton, John Billington, Richard Warren, Peter Browne, Francis Eaton, Samuel Fuller, James Chilton, John Tilley, Stephen Hopkins, John Howland.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Samuel Eaton (ca 1620-1684) and Martha Billington






Samuel Eaton was born about 1620, the son of Francis and Sarah Eaton. He came to Plymouth aboard the Mayflower in 1621. Governor Bradford wrote that Samuel was a “sucking child” on the ship, indicating he was a baby. He is my 10th great-grandfather on my grandfather Arthur Washburn Davis’ side of the family. I wrote about his parents here.



Samuel’s mother died during the first winter at Plymouth. Sadly he was orphaned at about age 13 when his father died in 1633.  A few years later at the age of 16 (in 1636), he was apprenticed to John Cooke for the period of 7 years.  John Cooke had come on the Mayflower in 1620, as a 13-year old boy.



He was on the 1643 Plymouth list of Men Able to Bear Arms.


Samuel married, first, Elizabeth, whose maiden name is not known, around 1646 (year she acknowledged a deed as his wife). They resided in Duxbury, not far from Plymouth.  Surprisingly little is known about this family. Samuel had two daughters with Elizabeth, whose names aren’t known.



On 10 March 1646 Samuel Eaton of “Duxborough” sold to Love Brewster the third part of land sometime belonging to Christian Billington, wife of Francis, formerly wife of Francis Eaton (Samuel’s father). The deed was acknowledged by Elizabeth Eaton.



In a 5 October 1652 court case, Samuel Eaton, age 32 years or thereabouts, deposed and Rachell Ramsden mentioned she heard Goodwife Eaton say Christopher Winter and Samuel Eaton were together on Monday last. (Goodwife Eaton is assumed to be Elizabeth, Samuel's wife, who she died after October 1652 but before January 1660/1).



Samuel married, second, in Plymouth on 10 January 1660/61 Martha Billington. Martha was born about 1638, the daughter of Francis and Christian (Penn) (Eaton) Billington. Christian was Samuel’s stepmother. Martha’s father was a Mayflower passenger, as where her grandparents John and Elinor Billington. I wrote about Martha's parents here.



He and Martha had four children: Sarah, Samuel, Bethiah, and Mercy.



I descend through Mercy who married Samuel Fuller, another Mayflower family.



In the 1660s, the family moved from Duxbury to Middleborough.



He died before 29 October 1684, when his probate estate inventory was taken. He was of Middleborough.



The settlement of Samuel’s estate mentions that the eldest child was to have the house and land that was granted to Eaton by the town of “Middleberry” after his mother's decease; the daughter was provided for by her Grandfather and was to have ten shillings at marriage or when she is of age; and the children of the first wife to have the sum of 20 shillings apiece and such of them as are dead the sum by paid among their children; and the two youngest children each to have their part at age or marriage whichever shall first happen; the widow to have the remainder for her relief.



Martha married, second, after a 7 December 1687 ante-nuptial contract, Robert Crossman of Taunton, born circa 1621 and died before 27 October 1692 when inventory of his estate was taken. He was probably the son of John Crossman. He had married first at Dedham, 25 May 1652, Sarah Kingsbury by whom he had 12 children.



On 4 October 1694 Martha Crossman, daughter of Francis Billington, quitclaimed to Thomas Sawyer of Marshfield land that her father gave to her then husband Samuel Eaton and herself and after their decease to their daughter Sarah now wife of Philip Bumpas.



Martha died after 9 June 1704, possibly in Plainfield, Connecticut. On 9 June 1704, Philip Bump transferred to his mother (in-law) Martha Crossman all his estate both personal and real in Plainfield, Connecticut.



Sources Not Mentioned Above:

Eugene Stratton, Plymouth Colony, Its History and People, 1986



Mayflower Families Through Five Generations, Volume Five, Edward Winslow and John Billington, published by the General Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1997



Van Antwerp, Lee Douglas and Wakefield, Robert, Mayflower Families Through Five Generations, Vol. 9, Family of Francis Eaton, GSMD, 1996

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