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Porter, Andrew (24 September 1743–16 November 1813), teacher and revolutionary war soldier, was born in Worcester, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, the son of Robert Porter, a farmer. His mother’s name is unknown. At an early age he showed a taste for reading and mathematics, and although he was apprenticed to his elder brother to learn carpentry at the age of eighteen or nineteen, he failed after a few months. Under the guidance of a teacher, Patrick Mennon, who lived about twelve miles from his home, he learned about sundials. Carving one from soapstone, he destroyed his brother’s carpentry tools. His father then tried to teach him farming, but Porter’s aversion to labor and his love for books caused him to spurn that profession as well. Thereupon, his father determined that he should become a schoolmaster and enrolled him in Mennon’s school. After quickly mastering the curriculum, Porter established a small school of his own and began to teach. He struck up an acquaintance with ...