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Ball Porter

Obituary of John H. W. Porter, Portsmouth, Virginia.

After a lingering illness, John H. W. Porter, Confederate veteran, attorney, newspaper publisher, and historian, died at his home, in Portsmouth, Va., on May 20, 1916, at the age of seventy-four years. In his death the city loses one of its most valued residents. He had been a builder as well as a chronicler of events; he was active in municipal work, and in his writings he left many valuable records of the great War between the States. He was Adjutant of Stonewall Camp, Confederate Veterans, for a long time, and was also a consistent member of the Monumental M. E. Church.

Mr. Porter was the scion of a distinguished Norfolk County family. His father was a famous naval contructor and the first designer of a steam-propelled, ironcald fighting vessel. John H. W. Porter received his education at the Portsmouth schools and the University of Virginia. He was at college when the war began and as a member of the student body assisted in the taking of Harper's Ferry in 1861. He then returned to Portsmouth and enlisted in the Confederate army with the "Old Dominion Guard" at the age of nineteen. Subsequently he was transferred to the Signal Corps and later to the infantry, receiving promotion to a lieutenancy. After the war he studied law and was admitted to practice in 1866. He was elected City Attorney in 1872 and served for seven years. He then went into the newspaper business and conducted the Portsmouth Daily Enterprise until 1889, when he resumed his legal practice. In 1883 he was elected to the Virginia Legislature and served two successive terms. Mr. Porter married, in 1869, the daughter of Owen D. Ball, of Baltimore, and is survived by his wife and son.


SOURCE: Confederate Veteran Magazine, August, 1916.



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