Porter, Ralph (1848-1915)

Transcription of obituary published in the Primitive Methodist Magazine by J.B.

Mr. Ralph Porter, brother of the late Rev. J. F. Porter, passed peacefully away on March 7th. Born in the colliery village of Trimdon sixty-seven years ago, his conversion took place in our chapel at Ludworth Colliery seven years later. Soon afterwards his parents removed to Shildon and then to South Church and associated themselves with Primitive Methodism, Mr. Porter being appointed choirmaster. 

About thirty-six years ago he took up his residence at Coundon Gate, and threw himself into the work of God in this society and village. He was appointed a trustee, society steward, choirmaster, class leader, and Sunday school teacher. His finest work was done in the Sunday school. At the time of his death he could look back upon fifty years of unbroken service amongst the young people. 

He was singularly blessed in his home. No woman could have been a truer helpmeet than Mrs. Porter. His children are all Primitive Methodists, and one son is an acceptable local preacher. 


Ralph was born abt1848 at Trimdon, Co. Durham, to parents Benjamin Porter, a blacksmith (1851), and Margaret Fletcher. He was baptised on 29 March 1848 at Trimdon.

Census returns identify the following occupations for Ralph.

  • 1861 coal miner
  • 1871 coal miner
  • 1881 coal miner Local Methodist preacher
  • 1891 coal miner & local preacher
  • 1901 coal miner hewer
  • 1911 retired coal miner

He married Margaret Wheatley (1852-1918) on 2 April 1870 at Auckland St Andrew, Co. Durham. Census returns identify six of eight children.

  • John Fletcher (1871-1931) – shop assistant grocer (1901); grey cloth singeing (1911)
  • Benjamin (1874-1956) – coal miner labourer above ground (1901)
  • Mary (1876-1961) – dressmaker (1901)
  • Elizabeth (1880-1885)
  • Harry (1883-1927) – fitter (engineer) (1901); colliery pipe fitter underground (1921)
  • Herbert Graham (1889-1957) – blacksmith (1911); blacksmith electric welder (1939)

Ralph died on 7 March 1915 at Coundon Gate, Co. Durham.


Primitive Methodist Magazine 1915/999

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

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