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John Bonsall Porter

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John Bonsall Porter (1861-1944)


1944 Obituary [1]

JOHN BONBALL PORTER was born at Glendale, Ohio, on the 1st October, 1861, and died at Montreal, Canada, on the 10th April, 1944.

He was educated privately and at Columbia University, New York, where he obtained the degree of E.M., and later was granted the degree of Ph.D. for advanced original work.

From 1885 to 1889 he conducted a consulting practice in the examination and testing of rails, coals, and ores - chiefly for the engineering departments of railways in the central United States.

From 1889 to 1893 he acted a8 Engineer for maintenance on the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railway, with full charge of all track and structures, including construction.

From 1893 to 1890 he was Chief Engineer and superintendent of the Cleveland and Western Railway and the Glendale Water Works, including the complete rebuilding of the former and original construction and design of the latter.

In 1896 he returned to private consulting practice, and in the same year was appointed Professor of Mining and Metallurgy at McGill University, Montreal, where he designed the new Macdonald laboratories for Mining Engineering, with their equipment.

In 1904 he became Professor in Mining Engineering and Director of the Department, which position he held until his retirement in 1926. He was the senior Professor emeritus of the University.

From 1900 to 1912 he was in charge of the Dominion Government investigation of the coal resources of Canada, and during the Great War he was, from 1915 to 1919, in charge of the Sphagnum Dressings Department of the Canadian Red Cross. He was the author of “The Coals of Canada” (six volumes), “The Weathering of Coal,” and numerous technical Papers on engineering and educational subjects, on sphagnum dressings, and on Red Cross supplies.

He also acted as Organizing Secretary of the Canadian Engineering Standards Committee (1917), and was Vice-chairman of the Committee from 1922 to 1936....[more]


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