EATON, Margaret

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EATON, Margaret Ann Holden (1876-1947) [SS#569-16-9250], Canadian wife of Ira Eaton, born on February 22, 1876. Margaret came to Santa Barbara in 1902 at age 26 to find work at the Potter Hotel, and shortly thereafter met Ira at a party. They were married September 2, 1903, and had two daughters, Irene (1904-1905) who did not survive, and Vera (1906-2004). Margaret kept a diary which details her life as a fisherman’s wife and their various camps and activities on Santa Cruz Island which spanned from 1902 to 1938. In about 1935, Margaret divorced Ira, and according to court records, “the marriage had been unhappy for the past 14 years or more.” Additionally, Ira had “stepped out on his wife for many years of their marriage.”

After her death in Los Angeles on September 6 1947, her ashes were interred in Santa Barbara Cemetery by her daughter Vera Eaton on September 11, 1947.

Margaret Ann Holden, late 1800s

» Eaton, Margaret Diary of a Sea Captain’s Wife, Tales of Santa Cruz Island Santa Barbara, McNally & Loftin, 1980



June 24, 1913 [SBMP]: “…The Gussie M, under the direction of Captain Ira Eaton, was taking a large excursion to Eaton’s camp at Pelican Bay, Santa Cruz Island, to spend the day… The fifty-two passengers who made the trip on the Gussie M were joined at Pelican Bay by forty more who went over with Captain Short on the Charm. A chicken dinner and fish chowder was prepared by Mrs. Eaton and was much enjoyed. Many enjoyed a jaunt over the hills…”


July 4, 1914 [SBMP]: “Captain Ira K. Eaton returned from Pelican Bay in his powerboat, Sea Wolf, at noon yesterday, to add his handsome craft to the marine pageant that is expected to be such an important feature this evening, in the big celebration. Mrs. Eaton and her daughter, Vera, returned with the Captain for the Fourth of July festivities.”


September 11, 1915 [SBMP]: “Mr. and Mrs. Ogram of Los Angeles and J. J. Ogram of Barry, Ill., who has been visiting his sister, Mrs. O. J. Eaton of 320 E. Victoria Street, have returned from the Panama-Pacific Exposition and left yesterday morning on Captain Ira Eaton’s boat, the Sea Wolf, for Santa Cruz Island. Mrs. Eaton accompanied them to San Francisco. This is J. J. Ogram’s first visit to the coast, and he is much pleased with California in general and Santa Barbara in particular.”


September 8, 1947 [LAT]: “Deaths. Eaton, Margaret, beloved mother of Vera Amey, grandmother of Miss Jevere Gibbons, Michael and Susan Amey. Private services Tuesday. Forest Lawn Mortuary in charge.”