A native of Vermont, Edward E. Porter graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1851. That same year he was appointed professor of natural philosophy and civil engineering at Delaware College. Porter acquired an M.A. from his alma mater in 1854. After serving with the 7th Delaware Infantry in the Union Army, Porter returned to Delaware College as vice-president and professor of agriculture and was instrumental in helping that institution achieve land grant status. In 1881 he left for the University of Minnesota and an appointment as professor of agriculture and the state's first director of Experimental Station. He received an honorary Ph.D. from Delaware College in 1882.
Porter was appointed dean of the College of Agriculture and director of the Experiment Station at Mizzou in 1889. As the third dean of the college, he redesigned the curriculum to support the practical needs of agrarians around the state. Under Porter's direction, facilities were greatly improved as monies received under the Morrill Act became closely monitored for use by the College of Agriculture. At the age of 66, Porter suffered a heart attack and died several weeks later at the dean's residence on the college farm
Mumford, Frederick Blackmar, History of the Missouri College of Agriculture, 1944.
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