Richard Behrens Eaton
Judge Richard B. Eaton served a long and distinguished career as Shasta County Superior Court Judge following a notable military career.
RICHARD BEHRENS EATON
Born in Oregon, Richard was raised in Redding by his mother, his Aunt Ella, and his grandmother. He was also influenced by Uncle Earl, classmates, and teachers. Richard graduated from high school in 1930 at the age 15 and attended Stanford earning his law degree. He returned to Redding in 1938 to practice law.
By 1940 with the war looming, Richard was called to active duty from the reserves and served as a 1st Lieutenant in San Francisco. In 1942, he shipped out to North Africa as a Captain. He also served in Italy and Germany and returned as a major with decorations and 3 stars. In 1946, he came back to Redding to practice law, but he remained in the reserves until 1974 reaching the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
In 1951, he was appointed a Superior Court Judge of Shasta County - a position he held for 25 years. The Judge dedicated his life to preserving history and was devoted to the Scouts, his church and community, plus many other civic organizations. He died in 2003 in this home at the age of 88 after living here for 84 years. Since he spent so much of his life here, he wanted his home to be preserved as a Victorian museum. His will specified that his estate be in a trust to be run by 3 governors representing the historical, judicial, and educational communities. (The Eaton Gift)
History of the House
The home was built in 1895 for John V. Scott by James Scamman who was a shipbuilder from Maine and a fine carpenter. Scott owned hotels in Shasta but later worked in the County Land Office. He sold his home to Charles Behrens in 1899.
By 1916 a wrap-around front porch was added along with a bathroom, kitchen, and dining room. Later part of the porch was enclosed to enlarge the living room plus a portico was built and sleeping porch was added upstairs.
The Behrens Family
In 1859, Charles Behrens was born in Whiskeytown. His parents, Ludwig and Louisa, emigrated from Germany in the 1850s; they came for gold but sold supplies to miners. Charles began clerking for John V. Scott at the Empire Hotel in Shasta and worked his way up to managing it.
Their son Richard was born 1n 1914 in Albany. In 1918, Walter died in the flu pandemic so Edna returned to Redding with her son. She was elected Shasta County Treasurer in 1922 and held that position for 16 years.
The Eaton Family
Walter Eaton was born in Ohio and moved to Oregon where he attended college. He graduated in 1909 and began work as a chemist in Shasta County at the Coram smelter.
The couple married in the parlor of this home in 1913 and moved to Oregon to be near his family.