ABEL CAPEN EATON, well known in DuQuoin as the foreman of the Majestic Coal and Coke Company, was born in this city on October 28, 1868, and is a brother of Samuel B. Eaton, one of the large operators in coal in Southern Illinois and the vice-president of the company named above. The schools of the community gave to Abel Eaton such education as he was permitted to receive, but he was not a regular attendant past the age of sixteen years. He became more or less familiar with coal mining methods as a boy about the mines, but was not actively connected with the work until in more recent years. When he was seventeen years old he engaged in railroading with the Cotton Belt Company as a brakeman in the train service, located at Pine Bluff, Arkansas, following that service with a season of employment as a fireman, subsequently being promoted to the position of engineer, and he served in that capacity with the Frisco Company on the St. Louis, Kennett and Southern branch of their road. After many months of service in the swamps of southeastern Missouri he was attacked with malaria, and he was finally forced to abandon his position there and seek a climate in which his health might be restored. He naturally returned to his old home in DuQuoin in his search for renewed health, and after some little time there he was able to resume work, and he accepted a position as hoisting engineer at the Leiter mines at Zeigler, Illinois. His ability was such that he was not for long permitted to occupy the more humble place, and within a comparatively short time he was promoted to the position of assistant mine manager. He remained in that place for some time, and then went to West Frankfort as night foreman for the Deering Coal Company there, and left them after some eight months to take the place of assistant mine boss with the Majestic Company in 1906. When the vacancy in the foremanship occurred he was promoted to the position, and since that time he has had charge of the two properties of the company situated in the same field, filling the position in a manner wholly creditable to himself and satisfactorily to the company. Mr. Eaton is a member of a number of fraternal orders, among them being the Odd Fellows, the Order of Eagles and of the Red Men.
Mr. Eaton has been twice married. His first marriage was with Miss Mamie Collins. One son was born to them, Edward, who is a
graduate of the Cone Trade School of Chicago and is an electrician for the Majestic interests, and who married in 1911 Miss Blanche Matthews. In May, 1905, Mr. Eaton married Miss Sibyl Burk in Benton, Illinois. She is a daughter of Riley and Done (Glover) Burk. The Eaton family reside upon the old Eaton homestead east of DuQuoin, where the father, William Eaton, settled before the Civil war, and where many early and interesting events in the history of the family took place.