Buena Vista County, IA
IAGenWeb Project

Extracted from:  Wegerslev, C. H. and Thomas Walpole. 
 Past and Present of Buena Vista County, Iowa
Chicago:  S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909, p. 364-67.

Transcribed by Paul Nagy

Biography of  Charles O. Porter

Charles O. Porter is a retired farmer living at Storm Lake.  He was for a long period connected with agricultural interests and was also well known as a stock-dealer, but when his business activity had brought him a handsome competence he put aside further business cares and is now living a retired life.  He was born in Massachusetts in 1851 and was the fourth in order of birth in a family of six children, his parents being Orin S. and Mary (Royce) Porter.  The parents were both natives of Connecticut and the former was of Irish lineage, while the latter was of Welsh descent.  The Royce family was represented in the war of 1812.  In the year 1853 Orin S. Porter left New England and went with his family to Illinois, settling upon a farm in Will county where he spent his remaining days.  Throughout his entire life he engaged in the tilling of the soil and met with a creditable and gratifying measure of success in his undertakings. His political views were in harmony with the principles of the republican party.  He died in 1901 at the venerable age of eighty-four years, having for some time survived his wife, who passed away in 1892 at the age of seventy-four years, in the faith of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which she was long a consistent member.


Charles O. Porter was reared to farm life, early becoming familiar with all the duties and labors that belong to the lot of the agriculturist.  He attended the country schools when not busy with the work of the fields and when he put aside his text-books he determined to make the occupation to which he had been reared his life work. In 1883 he arrived in Iowa, settling in Sac county near

the Buena Vista line.  There for almost two decades he carried on general farming, bringing his fields under a high state of cultivation and annually gathering good crops as the result of his diligence and perseverance.  He also engaged quite extensively in handling horses and other stock.  He owns a half section of improved land in Sac county and from this property derives a substantial annual income.  In 1902 he left the farm and removed to Storm Lake, where he is now pleasantly located in a comfortable home, a handsome competency supplying him with all of the comforts and many of the luxuries that go to make life worth living.


In 1880 Mr. Porter was united in marriage to Miss Anna A. Autcliff, who was born in England in 1851 and during her childhood days was brought to the United States by her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Autcliff, who established their home in Will county, Illinois.  Mrs. Porter is one of a family of six children; the others being:  Harriett, who is now deceased; Charlotte, the wife of Henry H. Merrill, a capitalist of Gladbrooke, Tama county, Iowa; Eliza, the wife of John Simpson, a farmer and stockman living in Kossuth county; Mary, the wife of George Aufcliff, a farmer of Indiana; and Jane, who has passed away. Mr. and Mrs. Porter have two daughters:  Lizzie A., now the wife of William Miller, of Alta, Iowa; and Ada B., who is at home and is bookkeeper for H. W. Krause Company of Storm Lake.  The parents are members of the Methodist Episcopal church and have led lives of usefulness, winning for them the respect and good will of all who know them.  Mr. Porter exercises his right of franchise in support of the men and measures of the republican party and has served in a number of township offices.  In all the relations of life he has been found loyal to duty and his genuine worth has gained him the admiration of all and the friendship of many.