William H. Eaton enlisted as a private in the 1st Maryland Infantry (Union)- Eastern Shore on October 14, 1861 for a period of 3 years. Most of the 1st Maryland Eastern Shore's duty involved garrison duty on the border between Maryland and Virginia on the eastern side of the Chesapeake Bay. William wrote home several times to his family in Cambridge, Md during the intervening years, tired of the boring duty in the regiment, but promising them not to worry about money, since his army pay would help pay off of their money troubles. In late June 1863, William wrote to his parents that excitement was afoot. Writing that "it is rumard that we will ship for Baltimare", the regiment would ultimately head to its first engagement at Gettysburg, fighting Confederate Marylanders on Culp's Hill. When the fighting had ended, William was one of the five killed in the 1st Maryland Eastern Shore. After his father wrote asking about William, Lt. James Hooper, commanding William's Co. E, wrote this reply: "Point of Rocks Frederick Co Md August 29, 1863 Mr. Eaton Dear Sir Your letter of a late date was received some time since and I should have answered it sooner but have had a great deal of writing to do of late. Stafford & Blades neither have been with the company for months and consequently all the duties of the company devolved on me. I have just sent to the Adjutant General at Washington Williams account against the Government, and if that officer is prompt in the discharge of his duty, you will have sent to you a check for the money due your son, in a short time. If I can possibly get an opportunity I will find Billy’s remains and send them to you free of cost On the day of battle I sent after his twice, but the rebel shot and shell were raining so fast that the party had to return without him ---pg2---- I should have written to you concer- ning Williams death immediately after the battle, but I know that it must be painful to his mother, and that by writing to others she would hear it soon enough. You say that you heard William fought bravely at Gettysburg You were rightly informed, as I am a witness to the manner in which he behaved in the face of the enemy I was not more than six feet from him when he fell, the ball which passed through his head came near me. No man in the Regiment acted in a more Corageis Manner than the young man whose death we all sadly deplore—And I in common with—his comrades in arms share the grief which his parents so deeply feel. Remember me to Mrs Eaton and the children I shall be pleased to hear from you at any time. Respectfully, James R. Hooper" William Eaton's body was unfortunately not returned to Eastern Maryland, but interred in a fitting place, the Soldier's National Cemetery at Gettysburg (Maryland Plot B-1).