DAVID DIXON PORTER, illustrious as admiral of the United States navy, and famous as one of the most able naval
offi cers of America, was born in Pennsylvania, June 8, 1814. His father was also a naval officer of distinction,
who left the service of the United States to become commander of the naval forces of Mexico during the war between
that country and Spain, and through this fact David Dixon Porter was appointed a midshipman in the Mexican navy.
Two years later David D. Porter joined the United States navy as midshipman, rose in rank and eighteen years later
as a lieutenant he is found actively engaged in all the operations of our navy along the east coast of Mexico.
When the Civil war broke out Porter, then a commander, was dispatched in the Powhattan to the relief of Fort Pickens,
Florida. This duty accomplished, he fitted out a mortar flotilla for the reduction of the forts guarding the approaches
to New Orleans, which it was considered of vital importance for the government to get possession of. After the
fall of New Orleans the mortar flotilla was actively engaged at Vicksburg, and in the fall of 1862 Porter was made
a rear admiral and placed in command of all the naval forces on the western rivers above New Orleans.
The ability of the man was now conspicuously manifested, not only in the battles in which he was engaged, but also
in the creation of a formidable fleet out of river steamboats, which he covered with such plating as they would
bear. In 1864 he was transferred to the Atlantic coast to command the naval forces destined to oper ate against
the defences of Wilmington, North Carolina, and on Jan. 15, 1865, the fall of Fort Fisher was hailed by the country
as a glorious termination of his arduous war service. In 1866 he was made vice admiral and appointed superintendent
of the Naval Academy. On the death of Farragut, in 1870, he succeeded that able man as adnairal of the navy. His
death occurred at Washington, February 13, 1891.
A Biographical Record
Of Schuyler County, New York
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
New York and Chicago 1903.
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