John A. Eaton

G.AR. Post 213 Namesake

Greenwood, Clark Co., Wisconsin



John A. Eaton was the second son of Ebenezer and Hannah (Cross) Eaton of Merrimac County, New Hampshire.   He was named for his paternal grandfather and was born March 11, 1848 in Newbury, New Hampshire.  John joined the Union Army during the Great Civil war and returned home in a flag drapped wooded box.  He died from wounds while serving with Company H, 10th Infantry Regiment New Hampshire on *May 27, 1864 and was never able to move to Clark County with his two younger brothers, Alfred and Edwin.


John's brother, Alfred S. Eaton, became one of Wisconsin's best known Civil War veterans.  The G.A.R in Greenwood, Wisconsin was named for John A. Eaton, the older brother of Alfred Surraneous Eaton who was one of its founding members. 


Eben (Ebenezer), Hannah and John A. Eaton are buried at: Marshall Cemetery, Newbury, Merrimack Co., New Hampshire.




John A. Eaton

Father: Ebenezer (Eben) Eaton, b. February 7, 1809 in Newbury, Merrimack Co., NH, son of John & Phebe (Brockway) Eaton who married in 1836.

Mother: Hannah B. Cross, b. in Newbury, Merrimack, NH, the daughter of Jesse and Anna (Dow) Cross who were married April 23, 1799.  Hannah married Ebenezer Eaton, January 7, 1836.

Siblings: Phineas A. Eaton, b. 1836, Newbury, NH; Albert S., Newbury, NH; Alfred S. Eaton b. August 13, 1841, Newbury, NH; Jesse Wilbur F. Eaton, b. April 8, 1843; Edwin A. Eaton, b. April 16, 1846; Phineas A. Eaton, b. November 3, 1856, Newbury, NH.



Census Records


1850 Census Newbury, Merrimack Co., New Hampshire
Name Age Sex Occupation Value of Real Estate  Birth Place
Eaton, Ebenzer 41 m Laborer 1000 New Hampshire
Eaton, Hanah 41 f     New Hampshire
Eaton, Phinehas E.  14 m     New Hampshire
Eaton, John A.  12 m     New Hampshire
Eaton, Alfred S.  10 m     New Hampshire
Eaton, Albert S.  11 m     New Hampshire
Eaton, Jesse W.  7 m     New Hampshire
Eaton, Edwin A.  4 m     New Hampshire





Name: John A. Eaton

Enlistment Date: 9 Aug 1862

Side Served: Union 

State Served: New Hampshire 

Service Record: Promoted to Full 1st Sergeant.

Enlisted as a Private on 9 August 1862 at the age of 24.

Enlisted in Company H, 10th Infantry Regiment New Hampshire on 4 Sep 1862.

Promoted to Full 2nd Lieutenant on 9 Jun 1863.

Promoted to Full 1st Lieutenant on 1 Jan 1864.

***Died from wounds Company H, 10th Infantry Regiment New Hampshire on 27 May 1864.


Hanover Ferry--Crossing the Pamunkey.

John A. Eaton's last river crossing.


Cold Harbor, Virginia

John A. Eaton fought his last battle here on May 27, 1864.


The Battle of Cold Harbor and the Death of John A. Eaton


Source: Harper’s Pictorial History of the Civil War - 1866


Grant’s turning movement from the North Anna brought him, by a wide detour, to the Pamunkey River, formed by the junction of the North and South Anna, and this, uniting with the Mattapony, forms the York.  At the head of this was the White House, where Grant’s base of supplies was to be established.  Hitherto his great army had to be supplied from an ever-shifting base of wagons, over narrow roads through a densely wooded country.  Now they could be brought by water close to his lines, wherever they should be posted.  The Pamunkey was crossed, after several sharp skirmishes, on the 28th of May, and after three days Lee was found in his new position.  The Union losses at the North Anna, and in the actions from the 21st to the 31st, were 1607, of whom 827 were prisoners.  John A. Eaton was among those mortally wounded, but his brother, Alfred S. Eaton, continued to fight on with Company H of the 10th New Hampshire Volunteers.  The loss of the Confederates was much greater.


From the North Anna Lee had fallen back in a straight line, and assumed a position still covering Richmond.  The two armies were now verging toward the scene where they had contended two years before.  Since then, in anticipation of what was soon to happen, the ground had been thoroughly surveyed by the Confederates, lines of entrenchments and barricades laid out and partly constructed.  The lines covered the upper fords and bridges of the Chickahominy.  As finally developed, they formed a curve, the convex side turned toward the quarter extremity, which was as yet only slightly held, was as for southward as Cold Harbor, a mere point where converge several roads from the fords of the Chickahominy to the Pamunkey and York.  Here, in a quite isolated position, was a body of Confederate horse and foot, posted behind some light breast-works.  Torbert’s and Custer’s cavalry had scouted in this direction, and these generals had formed a plan to seize this point by a sudden dash.  Sheridan, coming down, agreed to this.  The attack was made on the 21st, and the place carried.  Sheridan notified Meade of this, but said that he could not retain it, for the enemy was hard by in considerable force.  He was directed to hold it at all hazards until relieved by infantry.  Grant had some days before embarked two thirds of the Army of the James from Bermuda Hundred, and ordered them to join the Army of the Potomac; they were now on the march, but still some miles distant.  On the morning of June 1st the enemy made efforts to drive out Sheridan; they were twice repulsed with severe loss.  Meanwhile Wright’s Sixth corps was sent by Grant, and Longstreet’s corps by Lee, marching by roads almost parallel, to the point.  Wright came up at 10 o’clock, arriving first, Longstreet halting behind entrenchments in a thick wood hard by.  Smith came up soon after, and the two corps made an attack upon the Confederate position.  An advanced line of the rifle trenches was carried, and six hundred prisoners taken.  But the second line was too strong to be forced.  But the possession of cold Harbor had been secured, though at a cost of two thousand men.  Hancock’s corps was now brought down and posted on the right of Wright’s. Harper's Pictorial History of the Civil War.



New Hampshire's 10th Regiment Infantry

Regiment organized at Manchester and mustered in September 4, 1862. Left State and moved to Washington, D.C., September 22-25; thence to Frederick, Md., September 30; to Sandy Hook, Md., October 4, and to Pleasant Valley October 6. Attached to 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, 9th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to April, 1863. 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, 7th Army Corps, Dept. of Virginia, to July, 1863. 3rd Brigade, Getty's Division, United States Forces, Norfolk and Portsmouth, Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina, to April, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 18th Army Corps, Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina, to December, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 24th Army Corps, Dept. of Virginia, to June, 1865.

SERVICE.--Duty at Pleasant Valley, Md., until October 27, 1862. Movement to Falmouth, Va., October 27-November 19. Battle of Fredericksburg. Va., December 12-15. Burnside's Second Campaign ("Mud March") January 20-24, 1863. Moved to Newport News, Va., February 9, thence to Norfolk and Suffolk March 14. Siege of Suffolk April 12-May 4. Battery Huger, Hill's Point, April 19. Reconnaissance across Nansemond River May 4. Moved to Portsmouth May 13, thence to Yorktown, Va. Dix's Peninsula Campaign June 24-July 7. Expedition from White House to South Anna River July 1-7. Moved to Portsmouth July 8-14, and to Julien Creek July 30. Duty there until March 19, 1864. Ballahock, on Bear Quarter Road, and Deep Creek, February 29-March 1, 1864. Moved to Great Bridge March 19, thence to Yorktown April 19. Butler's operations on south side of the James River against Petersburg and Richmond May 4-28. Port Walthal Junction May 7. Chester Station May 7. Swift Creek (or Arrowfield Church) May 9-10. Operations against Fort Darling May 12-16. Battle of Drewry's Bluff May 14-16. Bermuda Hundred June 17-27. Moved to White House, thence to *Cold Harbor May 27-31. Cold Harbor June 1-12. Before Petersburg June 15-19. Siege of Petersburg and Richmond June 15, 1864, to April 2, 1865. Chaffin's Farm, New Market Heights, September 28-30, 1864. Fort Harrison September 28-29. Battle of Fair Oaks October 27-28. Duty in lines north of James River before Richmond until April, 1865. Occupation of Richmond April 3. Provost duty at Manchester until June 21. Mustered out June 21, 1865. Veterans and Recruits transferred to 2nd New Hampshire Infantry.

Losses, 7 Officers and 54 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 1 Officer and 133 Enlisted men died of disease. Total 195.




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