Eaton, Theophilus, 1590–1658, Puritan leader in Connecticut, one of the founders of New Haven, b. Buckinghamshire, England. A member of the London congregation of John Davenport, he was interested in the Massachusetts Bay Company and other Puritan colonial ventures. In 1637 he went with Davenport and others to Boston, and later that year he led an exploring party that chose the site of a new colony. A small band was left to winter there, and the next spring settlers came, and New Haven was founded. Eaton was the governor and a leading figure of the New Haven colony until his death and was supposedly the chief drafter of the law code of 1656. He was much interested in trade and promoted the unsuccessful attempts of New Haven to found a colony on the Delaware.
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