Hodgkinson, Eaton, was born in 1789, and' was educated with a view to the Church, but, under the influence of Dr. Dalton, ho turned his attention; to mechanics. His researches into the laws that govern the resistance of materials to strain or pressure, conducted with the aid of Sir W. Fairbairn, marked a new epoch in railway engineering.
In 1841 he was made F.R.S., and in 1847 was appointed professor of engineering in University College, London. Stephenson entrusted to him the experiments that preceded the construction of the Britannia Tubular Bridge. He died at Manchester in 1861.