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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Portsmouth, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

John Luke Porter

1813-1893

 
 
John Luke Porter 1813-1893 Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Thomson, October 13, 2010
1. John Luke Porter 1813-1893 Marker
Inscription.  Wooden ships became helpless shortly before noon on March 8, 1862 when the CSS Virginia, the world's first steam-driven iron-clad vessel to be used in warfare, floated out to do battle against them. The next day the Northern ship USS Monitor arrived for the record-setting "Battle of the Iron-clads" which was fought to a draw.

The inventor of the CSS Virginia, Confederate Naval Constructor John Luke Porter had originally come up with an iron-clad design in the late 1840's but had been turned down. Then the war began in 1861, and Porter found that Stephen R. Mallory, confederate Naval Secretary, was receptive to his old brain-child. To save time and money, the frame for the CSS Virginia was made from the partially burned frigate Merrimack, one of the vessels damaged during the destruction of the Navy Yard by the Federal Authorities when they had departed in 1861.

Porter became the Chief Naval Constructor in the Confederate States Navy and served in that position until the end of the war. He designed most of the iron-clads built in the south, as well as several seagoing iron-clads which the Confederate government had contracted
John Luke Porter Monument image. Click for full size.
By James Thomson, October 13, 2010
2. John Luke Porter Monument
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to have built in England and France but which were stopped by those governments.
 
Erected by Stonewall Camp # 380, SCV (Sons of Confederate Veterans).
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesWar, US CivilWaterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Sons of Confederate Veterans/United Confederate Veterans series list. A significant historical month for this entry is March 1683.
 
Location. 36° 50.317′ N, 76° 18.467′ W. Marker is in Portsmouth, Virginia. Marker can be reached from Fort Lane, on the right when traveling north. Located in Cedar Grove Cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Portsmouth VA 23704, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Confederate Section (within shouting distance of this marker); Cedar Grove Cemetery (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Cedar Grove Cemetery (about 400 feet away); Ruth Brown (about 700 feet away); Emanuel A.M.E. Church (about 700 feet away); Matilda Sissieretta Joyner Jones (about 700 feet away); Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Birthplace of Dr. James W. Holley III (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Portsmouth.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 29, 2021. It was originally submitted on October 14, 2010, by James Thomson of Chesapeake, United States. This page has been viewed 826 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 14, 2010, by James Thomson of Chesapeake, United States. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Oct. 20, 2021