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Person Details
22 Sep 1895
John was the son of Harry and Sarah Porter. Harry was born in Nottingham in about 1865 and Sarah (nee Kirkham) in about 1865 in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire. They were married in Nottingham in 1884 (marriage registerd A/M/J Nottingham. According to the entry on the 1911 Census they had been married for 26 years and had had five children of whom only four were still living. Four children were named on the census between 1891 and 1911; Mary, Henry G, Leslie and John. All the children were born in Nottingham. In 1891 Harry (25), a lacemaker, and Sarah (25) were living at 51 Lambert Street, Radford, with their two children Mary (6) and Henry (1). Also in the household was a boarder, John Porter (60), a widower who was also a lacemaker. By 1901 Sarah (35) was living at 3 Collison Terrace, Nottingham, with her four children, Mary (16) a blouse maker, Henry (11), Leslie (8) and John (5). Sarah was described as the head of the household and was working as a lace mender. At the time of the 1901 Census Harry Porter was living at 2 Scotland Place, Elson Street, Basford, and was a boarder in the household of Alma Booth (35), a widow with two sons. By 1911 Harry, who was still employed as a lacemaker, and Sarah were living together at 44 Laurie Avenue, Hyson Green. Also in the household was their son John (15) a mechanic driller for a lace machine builder, a boarder, Eva Hunt (25), and Harry's nephew, Harold Porter (20). Harry and Sarah were living at the same address when John was killed in 1914. Sarah Porter died on 16 March 1932 at the age of 67; she was then living at 160 Wilkinson Street, Whitemoor Estate, Nottingham. Harry Porter probably died in 1939 (death registered December Nottingham).
26 Nov 1914
3056954 - CWGC Website
In 1911 he was a mechanical driller for a lace machine builder, although his occupation when he joined the Royal Navy in 1912 was given as miner.
Able Seaman
HMS Bulwark Royal Navy
John joined the Royal Navy on 27 April 1912 and engaged for 12 years on 22 September 1913, his 18th birthday. He served in the following ships and shore establishments: HMS Ganges, 27 April 1912-17 August 1912 (Boy Second Class); Ganges II, 18 April 1912-2 October 1912 (Boy First Class 2 October); HMS Donegal, 3 October 1912-9 January 1913’ HMS Victory, 10 January 1913-31 March 1913; HMS Irresistible, 1 April 1913-14 May 1913; HMS Duke of Edinburgh, 14 May 1913-2 March 1914 (Ordinary Seaman 22 September 1913); Victory I, 3 March 1914-21 March 1914; HMS Bulwark, 22 March 1914-26 November 1914 (Able Seaman 13 October 1914). Service documents annotated, ‘NP 3063/14. DD 26 Nov. 1914 when Bulwark was sunk.’ John's body was recovered and identified and he was buried in Gillingham (Woodlands) Cemetery (formerly New Cemetery), Kent (grave ref. Naval.14.709). On the afternoon of Thursday, November 26th, 1914, the First Lord of the Admiralty, Winston Churchill, made the following statement to the House of Commons : ‘I regret to say I have some bad news for the house. The Bulwark battleship, which was lying in Sheerness (on the River Medway) this morning, blew up at 7.35 o'clock. The Vice and Rear Admiral, who were present, have reported their conviction that it was an internal magazine explosion which rent the ship asunder. There was apparently no upheaval in the water, and the ship had entirely disappeared when the smoke had cleared away... I regret to say the loss of life is very severe. Only 12 men are saved. All the officers and the rest of the crew, who, I suppose, amounted to between 700 and 800, have perished. I think the House would wish me to express on their behalf the deep sorrow with which the House heard the news, and their sympathy with those who have lost their relatives and friends.’
Article in the Nottingham Evening Post dated 16th January 1915 reads :- “TATTOO MARKS LEAD TO IDENTIFICATION. “TWO MORE BULWARK VICTIMS. “Another Bulwark inquest, the third this week, was held at Chatham Naval Hospital to-day [16th January 1915] on two bodies. One, which was numbered 55, was identified as that of Edwin Amos Wood armourer, of Stamshaw, Portsmouth, and the other, which was numbered 56, was identified that of John Edwin Porter a seaman. Marks of identification on Porter included tattoo pictures on the arms, among them being a girl’s portrait. “The jury returned a verdict “Accidental death.” Above article courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918. Probate: Porter Sarah of 160 Wilkinson-street Whitemoor Estate Nottingham (wife of Harry Porter) died 16 March 1932 at 700 Hucknall-road Nottingham Administration Nottingham 7 April to the said Harry Porter lacemaker. Effects £117 3s. 5d.
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