There’s no better time than the internationally celebrated St. Patrick’s Day for highlighting the history of Irish Canadians. So let’s take this opportunity to learn about Timothy Eaton, the famous founder of the Eaton’s retail chain. Born in Ballymena, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, Timothy Eaton settled in Canada with his family around 1854. You can find out more about him in various Library and Archives Canada (LAC) resources—here’s how.
The Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online contains an interesting biography of Timothy Eaton, with a number of genealogical details such as the dates of his birth, marriage and death, and the names of his parents.
Unfortunately, since few lists of arrivals prior to 1865 have survived, Timothy Eaton’s name cannot be traced on any passenger lists.
LAC’s various databases—particularly the census databases—are excellent sources of information. For instance, the 1871 census lists Timothy Eaton as a merchant living in Toronto West with his wife Margaret and their three children, Edward, Josina and Margaret. Continue reading