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George M. Porter, a veteran of the Philippine War, has had a very strenuous and active career, but is now quietly engaged in the business of farming and stock raising near Homer, where he was born November 29, 1881. Mr. Porter represents some old settlers in this section of Illinois. His parents were Charles D. and Effie M. (Custer) Porter. His father was born in Ireland and was brought to America when a child, the family locating in Pennsylvania. The grandfather, Thomas Porter, finally brought his family to Homer, Illinois, and was the first cobbler in that town. Charles D. Porter became a railroad man and was killed at Springfield in 1902. He was switching cars when he slipped and went under a moving train to his death. Mr. Porter’s maternal grandfather, Martin B. Custer, walked all the way from Buffalo, West Virginia, to Homer, and for several years clerked for M. D. Coffeen in the latter’s store. He also became a commission buyer of live stock for Mr. Coffeen and in that way got his start in life. He became a wealthy man and owned eight hundred and sixty acres in Vermilion County besides lots in Chicago Heights and Danville. Through his daughter, Mrs. Porter, all this property ‘eventually descended to his grandson, George M. Porter. Mrs. Effie Porter died at Tampa, Florida, in 1907.
George M. Porter, the only child of his parents, spent his early life on a farm, and secured his education in the common schools. He was seventeen years of age when the war with Spain broke out and he then joined Troop G of the Fourth United States Cavalry. He was all through the Philippine War, and was in active service for four years. After his marriage he returned home and for seven years was a railroad man with the Chicago and Alton. Since then he has had active management of the extensive farm interests he owns in the vicinity of Homer and makes a specialty of feeding cattle and of handling thoroughbred Hampshire hogs.
On May 30, 1902, Mr. Porter married Fannie B. DeFrates, of French parentage. They have one son, Charles George, born August 3, 1903, and they also have two daughters, Hilda and Dorothy E. Mr. Porter is one of the best known citizens of Homer. He is a thirty-second degree Scottish Bite Mason and a member of various other Masonic bodies, belongs to the Elks, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias, is a member of the Presbyterian Church at Homer and in politics is a Republican.