John Eaton & Alice
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Information is an extraction from the book History and Genealogical and Biographical of the Eaton Families Compiled by Nellie Zada Rice Molyneux 1911.

From Dedham Records 25

The name continues to appear in the town records, and now refers to the son. JOHN EATON (2), of "The Hill", son of John (1) Eaton and Abigail (Damon) Eaton his wife, supposed to have been born in Watertown, where his father lived a vear, b 1636; m ALICE; d after Oct' 23, 1694. His wife d May 8, 1694.  In regard to ALICE, wife of JOHN EATON so far her maiden name has not been found - it is given Elle once and every other time as ALICE. That she was a woman of some ability is shown by her persistence in looking after the family interest while her husband was "distracted".


Petition of ALICE EATON

Copied from the original paper on file inthe Mass. Archives.

To the Honnobrl General Court Assembled in Boston.

The Humble Petition of Alice wife of JOHN EATON of Dedham, humbly sheweth

That whereas he ys JN for many years past has been bereaved of ye right use of his reason some times ragin mad & delirious, other times more sober as so quietly to walk ye streets, but always utterly void of common prudence needful to ye manageing of an estate, as all ye know him can declare and as the imprudent disposal of a considerable part of his estate doth & may sufficiently evidence. And whereas during ys his condition (wch has been for a space of near 20 years) he has att several times (being inveigled & persuaded by such as very well knew his incapacity of manageing such affairs) disposed & conveyed & givin assurance in conveyance, of several parcels of land, for little other consideration than fair words, without the knowledge of his friends, & we, he himselfe is utterly ignorant, both as to persons to whom, time when & consideration for wch, he gave & made such sd deeds and conveyances.  

Whence yor humble petitioner her complaint arrises yt his family and posterity are oppresed, & greatly injured, by being held unjustly out of yr propper rights.  

And wheras ye sd Jno is now & continues as incapable of prudent manageing his business as formerly & therefore as probable further to squander & waste his remaining estate :

Do therefore (by, with, & upon ye consent & desire of ye sd JNO) humbly petition (being constrained by wt allready suffered, as by wt yor petitioner has reason to fear, And emboldened by ye hopes of ye favor clemency & commiseration of this honnourable Assembly) that such cours may be taken as yt yor Humble petitioner & her indigent family, may have redress of grievances, and pervent inconveniences of ye like nature by making and empowering a committee to examin & rectify all past conveyances of land by him ye sd Jno made & putting ye sd Jno under a ward or Guardian without whom he may not have power to act in things of this rate, and hereby yor Humble Petitioner shall be further obliged to pray always for yor Honnrs good improvement & happiness.        ALICE EATON .


Colonial Records, General Coutrt, 7th May 1684  

I answer to the petition of ALICE EATON , the request herein is granted: and Thomas Browne of Cambridge, & John Fuller of Dedham the petitioners neighbors, are appointed to be the committee with herselfe to inspect into this affaire, and examine what is done by the said JOHN EATON, irrationally and illegally; as also to take due course for the preventation of future damage, & preserve the estate for the benefit of the family.


Second Petition of ALICE EATON

on file at the State House.  

To The Honourable Generall Court Assembled in Boston, ALICE wife to JOHN EATON, Humbly shows that she is thankfull for this Courts favor in granting her petition referring to the wrong offered her husband in persons bargaining with him when he was uncapable, but finds the same less effectual for two reasons (1) that it doth not look like time enough for wee perceive that his greatest suffering to that sort may pass the twenty years allowed us and (2) their is wanting to us a committy of this honorable Court that may Examine persons Concerned and purchasers who will give us no Answer by which wee are kept in ignorance which two things if the Court shall please to favor us in wee doubt not of Justiss from such Courts as wee shall make our pleas before and so will bee of great benefit to his distressed family.  

And shall ever pray for vr honers. Dedham May 28, 1685. (Copy of Papers on file at State House)  

We testify for whom it may  consearne that JOHN EATON my neighbor was distracted some years before his father's death which is about 27 years sentce his father died, and before he had anything to dispose of eyther Leagally or eleaglly or either.

Thomas ffuller aged about 67 years

Richard Elliss aged about 64 years

Nathaniel Stearnes was a representative to the General Court from Dedham

Proceedings of General Court, 7 July 1685. In answer to the petition of ALICE EATON  wife of JOHN EATON, on her further motion it is in order that Lieutenant Nathaniel Stearnes be joined with the former committee appointed by this court 7th May 1684 in anSr to her then petition & for that and in the tryall of the premises the sd Left.  Sterne to appoint time and place of meeting, making their report to this Court how they find it.  

"We hear no more of this trouble after 1685 and may suppose that he was restored to health."  

The last remark of Prof. Eaton was based on the entry of death of John Eaton 3rd  

The son being called John Eaton Jr. it was assumed that the father was then living, and he could only say that JOHN EATON 2nd died after October 28th, 1694.  

JOHN EATON was living in 1694 at the timehis oldest son died; and in Volume five of the Dedham town records we can trace him still further. His name appears regularly in the tax lists from the date of his father's death until 1701; from 1701 to 1704 it is listed with that of his son William:  

After the year 1704, JOHN EATON's name disappears entirely from the lists, and that of William takes its place: so that it is probable that JOHN 2nd gave up the farms to his son and his descendants may believe that the closing years of the old man's life were calm and peaceful after the sickness and misfortunes that he experienced. Whether he had learned, as have his descendants and successors, the charm of standing on the Great Rock and enjoying the extensive view of the Charles River meadows of Roxbury and Newton Hills not far distant or sheltered from northerly winds in one of the depressions of its southerly face, he looked across the river flowing in front, and contemplated the settlement, which had grown in his day from a small hamlet to what must have seemed to him a respectable town, with its meeting house, school house and tavern ; or whether, as appreciation of natural scenery is a modern cultivated taste, he contented himself with sitting in the sunshine at his home, the Rock must have been as object of his daily vision.  

The next occurence of his name on record is on a deed made in 1700 selling a farm to his son—this farm was in the neighborhood of what is now called Moteley's Pond and it is evident that John 2nd, continued to hold the estate  containing the Rock.  

This homestead also came afterwards into possession of William by inheritance.