Major General David D. Porter, USMC, (1877-1944)

David Dixon Porter was born on 29 April 1877 in Washington, D.C. Appointed from the District of Columbia in the U.S. Marine Corps as a Second Lieutenant in May 1898, he was initially assigned to the Marine Barracks at Naval Station, Newport, Rhode Island. Six months later, he transferred to the Marine Barracks at Cavite, Philippines. In April 1899, he was promoted to First Lieutenant, then to Captain in July 1900, with Brevet Rank to Captain from October 1899. In October and November 1901, he participated in the Philippine Insurrection. On 26 October, he successfully led his men against the enemy at Quinapundan River at Samar. On 17 November, he fought the enemy at the junction of Cadacan and Sohoton Rivers at Samar, where he attacked the insurgents by surprise and led his men up 200 feet on dangerous fortified cliffs then destroyed their fortified positions. Further, he led his men to scale additional cliff positions to destroy additional camps on the other side of the river. For his actions on these occasions, Porter was awarded the Medal of Honor .

In July 1902, Porter was ordered to Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C. and transferred six months later to serve on USS Missouri. In January 1906, he returned to the Marine Barracks at Washington, D.C., where also had temporary duty with the First Provisional Regiment of Marines in Cuba after the Cuban Revolution. In May 1908, Porter was promoted to Major and reported for duty in the Adjutant and Inspector's Department at Marine Corps Headquarters in Washington, D.C. In his subsequent posts, he served with the Adjutant and Inspector's Department. In August 1911, he reported to the First Brigade Marines in the Philippines. In May 1914, he transferred to the Eastern Recruiting Station at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While at the Recruiting Station, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in August 1916. During World War I, he returned to Marine Corps Headquarters and was temporarily promoted to Colonel in July 1918, which was made permanent in March 1920.

In August 1921, Porter became Officer in Charge of the Eastern Recruiting Division at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and served in this position for over ten years. In October 1933, he returned at the Marine Corps Headquarters. On 25 April 1934, for his "extraordinary heroism" at the Philippine Insurrection in October and November 1901, he was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. In November, he was promoted to Brigadier General and became Adjutant and Inspector for the Marine Corps. In March 1937, he retired and was placed on the retired list. In February 1942, Porter was promoted to Major General on the retired list due to his prior combat. David D. Porter died on 25 February 1944 and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

This page features all the images we have concerning David D. Porter.

Photo #: NH 47206

Lieutenant Colonel David D. Porter, USMC

A circa 1910 photograph of Lieutenant Colonel Porter, who was the grandson of Admiral David D. Porter, USN. Porter was awarded the Medal of Honor for "extraordinary heroism" during the Philippine Insurrection.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 55KB; 565 x 765 pixels

Photo #: NH 104799

U.S. Navy Medal of Honor

Reverse of Medal of Honor awarded to Colonel David D. Porter, USMC, for "extraordinary heroism" during the Philippine Insurrection on 17 November 1901. Colonel Porter was a Captain at that time.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph

Online Image: 41KB; 590 x 765 pixels


Medal of Honor citation of Colonel David D. Porter, USMC (as printed in the official publication "Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, The Navy", page 82):

"For extraordinary heroism and eminent and conspicuous conduct in battle at the junction of Cadacan and Sohoton Rivers, Samar, Philippine Islands, 17 November 1901. In command of the columns upon their uniting ashore in the Sohoton Region, Colonel Porter (then Captain) made a surprise attack on the fortified cliffs and completely routed the enemy, killing 30 and capturing and destroying the power magazine, 40 lantacas (guns), rice, food and cuartels. Due to his courage, intelligence, discrimination, and zeal, he successfully led his men up the cliffs by means of bamboo ladders to a height of 200 feet. The cliffs were of soft stone of volcanic origin, in nature of pumice and were honeycombed with caves. Tons of rocks were suspended in platforms held in position by vines and cables (known as bejuco) in readiness to be precipitated upon people below. After driving the insurgents from their position which was almost impregnable, being covered with numerous trails lined with poisoned spears, pits, etc., Colonel Porter led his men across the river, scaled the cliffs on the opposite side, and destroyed the camps there. He and the men under his command overcame incredible difficulties and dangers in destroying positions which, according to reports from old prisoners, had taken 3 years to perfect, were held as a final rallying post, and were never before penetrated by white troops. Colonel Porter also rendered distinguished public service in the presence of the enemy at Quinapundan River, Samar, Philippine Islands, on 26 October 1901."

For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.

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