An Addendum to The Porters

By Dennis E. Power

As I was working on a graphic family tree for The Porters, written by fellow New Wold Newton Meteoritic Society Member, Chuck Loridans, something jogged my mind. I came across this little tidbit in my review of David Vincent Jr. Papers.  Naturally Mr. Loridans, not being privy to the Vincent Papers nor,  so far as I know, not being even slightly familiar with the Northwestern Capellean scripts, was totally unaware of  this information.

    Addendum 1: You will have noticed that the parentage of A. Porter was left blank in Mr. Loridan's timeline. This was not a mistake on his part but rather an attempt to sheild the family further embarrassment. As if having a family curse was not bad enough, having a pirate in the family was one too many skeletons in the family closet. I, however being of a more abrasive nature, will scour away all of the gilt to lay bare the truth.

    You will see that A. Porter's mother was a Drummond. She however belonged to the American branch based early in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in North Carolina and nearby environs.

By the late nineteenth century they had moved west. By this time many members of this branch of the family lacked certain finer qualities previously associated with the Drummond clan such as an avoidance of theivery and murder. My fellow researcher Mark Brown will one day I hope fill in the gap between the Drummonds of North Carolina  and the Drummons . The Drummons epic battle with Silvertip can be seen in the first  novel of that series, Silvertip by Max Brand. What then caused the drastic change of type for the family from crime fighters to criminals? This change came about because of the introduction of another set of Drummond genes.

    You will have no doubt heard of the name Blackbeard, the notorious bloodthirsty pirate of the Caribbean and North American coast. He commonly went by the name of Edward Thatch or Edward Teach. His birth name was Edward Drummond and he was born in Bristol, England. However he was born too early to have been affected by the Wold Newton Meteorite so we can only assume that his ancestors were affected by one of the other earlier Meteorite falls. There is also a possibility that the blood of Kane flowed in his veins. In his final battle it took a combination of 27 cutlass and shot wounds to fell him.

    Teach was married 14 to 27 times in his career, usually without benefit of clergy or divorce. One of his "marriages" was to a woman of the Drummond line around 1716. Their child also bore the Drummond name which may have been from Teach using his real name for once or because of the casual nature of the marriage, the woman used her own name.

    A descendant of this marriage was William Drummond. He was also a nautical man by trade, Captain of a merchant vessel. However, there is some evidence that he may have imitated his ancestor to the extent of calling himself Teach playing pirate on occasion, although if so he was rather pathetic at it. If it is indeed him, an account of his exploits may be seen as the master of the ship Gloria in R.L. Stevenson's The Master of Ballantrae.

    This William Drummond married an Angelique Rutherford, (the Rutherford line may have also been corrupted by Teach or some other insidious genetic insertion as Mark Brown may one day explain.) Their daughter was Anne Drummond but records are scanty as to her behavior at least at this writing so we may hope that the tendency towards immorality skipped her.

   Addendum 2:  It seems that during the period when A. Porter was between wives, he needed a second house servant to help with the children. His friends urged him to purchase a slave. His initial refusal was met with suspicion that he might harbor abolitionist sentiments, so to prevent a loss of status in the community, he made inquiries for a likely prospect.  He purchased Justine Henry of Ohio. Justine was a young, vibrant woman in her thirties. Her mother was  Betty (Bafia) Henry and her father (I haven't quite determined who that was as of yet, as Mr. Vincent will tell you my translation skills leave much to be desired.) The yet to be famous John Henry was Justine's half  brother.

    A. Porter found the young woman very personable and shockingly highly intelligent. Shockingly, because like many people of his time period and class, he assumed that the minds of African and African-Americans were little better than those of children. She had, illegally of course, been taught to read. He discovered her reading a book in his library as she was cleaning. Stunned by this revelation he tested her and found her to be remarkably intelligent.

    He allowed her free use of his library whenever she had finished their duties. As time went on he would have long conversations with her about her current reading interests. These conversations bloomed into a love affair, something that took A. Porter by shock. By law and social custom he could neither marry nor free Justine yet he could not live without her.

    He had made the agonizing decision to sell her. When she informed him that she was going to bear his child. A. Porter changed his mind about selling her. Although by law his child would be a slave, he could not bear the thought of it being raised and possibly abused by some cruel master, so he would keep both mother and child and damn public sentiment.

    Justine tragically died in child birth, giving life to twins born in 1845, her daughter, Miranda  and her son Peter Michael. Peter Michael and  Miranda had an unusual upbringing. A. Porter could not publicly acknowledge them as his children but would not allow them to be treated as typical slaves. They were allowed to play with his other children but he was afraid to educate them, believing that it would do them no good in the end, since they would never be allowed to use their minds.

    Peter Michael rebelled against this treatment and ran away from home at the age of ten. His features allowed him to pass for a swarthy Caucasian and he did so for the rest of his life, consciously forgetting his past. However, he may have continued to use the Porter name, out of spite if nothing else.  He became cabin boy on the Sea Unicorn, although he may have worked other berths between the time he worked his way up to Captain of the Sea Unicorn by 1882. Black Peter, as he became known for his swarthy coloring and large black beard, displayed much of the self destructive and violent behavior inherent with the de la Poer curse, couple with looks that appear to be derived from his distant ancestor Blackbeard. As befitting the great-grandson of Waziri cheiftain he was a large muscular speciman of a man.

    In 1883,  Black Peter as he was called picked up Neligian, a West Country banker from his disable yacht. Neligian had been on his way to Norway to sell some securities to prevent a failure of his bank. Peter Michael found out about the securities and pitched Neligian overboard to get them. He was observed in this by Patrick Cairns, a whaler.

    1n 1884, Peter retired to live on his stolen securities. He discovered that Cairns was going to blackmail him. Cairns had however gotten insurance that would incriminate Peter should he die or disappear, so Peter Michael decided to go to sea and shake Cairns.

    He enlisted as a common sailor in southern sailing ship lines, using his middle name Michael and an alias as his last name. After kicking around for a while in 1888 he landed on the Fuwalda, commanded by the brutal Captain Billings. Michael or Black Michael as his crewmates called him had a nearly fatal run in with Billings, his life saved by John Clayton, a passenger. When Peter lead a mutiny and took over the ship, he used his fists and persuasion to keep the Claytons alive. Unknowingly, he was also securing the future of his grandniece's husband. He marooned them on the African shore, telling Clayton he would in inform his government of his whereabouts. He never did.

    He did however inform John Clayton's father, the so called socialist Duke. John Clayton had given up his title to work as a cabdriver, showing his dedication to the Cause. Known for his violent temper, having once punched Karl Marx in the nose, John Clayton reacted violently when Peter offered to sell him the location of the Claytons. Peter ended up killing him. Peter then approached the Duke's brother and offered him a proposition, he could either tell the Duke where the heir to the Ducal title was for a sum or he could keep mum about the location for a sum. The Duke paid for the information but Peter became greedy and demanded more money. Possibly thinking this was a confidence game, the Duke dismissed Peter.

    In 1895, Peter was found stuck to a wall with a harpoon. His murderer was the same Peter Cairns that had witnesses him throwing Neligian overboard. Sherlock Holmes investigated this case and it was written up as the Adventure of Black Peter. Holmes investigated Peter's background and discovered that he was the murderer of the fifth Duke.  Watson using his method of codes changed Peter Michael Porter's name to Peter Michael Carey.

Miranda lived the life of a favored house slave, she temporarily left the services of  the Porters in 1865 after she gained her freedom. Mainly the reason for her departure came from the way A. Porter's second wife treated her.

Miranda married a local blacksmith, William who having no last name took his wife's. William had been captured in 1823 at the age of ten off the coast of Rio Muni and had been taken to Maryland and sold into slavery, (probably illegally since international slave was supposed to have stopped in 1820) Since William was a Waziri as had been Miranda's grandmother Bafia, it is an odd coincidence that the daughter of William and Miranda, Emeralda b 1868 would help raise a woman who would become the honorary Queen of the Waziri.

    In 1878, A. Porter, practically pleading with Miranda, managed to get her return to her housekeeping duties. A. Porter was suffering from a mysterious malady and his wife was overwhelmed trying to take care of two children.

    In 1880 something strange happened. A. Porter died under mysterious circumstances and his wife was placed in a sanitarium. What exactly happened? This is only speculation, mind you but----A. Porter changed his will to give Miranda and William a very nice piece of property with a very nice house on it. When his wife demanded to know why he was being so generous to a slave, former slave that is. When A. Porter explained that Miranda was his child, Mrs. Porter went insane. (Evidently she was one of those who believed in the slavery being a God sanctified institution, that African-Americans were subhuman and to touch them was defiling but to actually.... and the fact that some one who had actually of them had .............her.  She poisoned. A. Porter and  went over to the house Miranda was supposed to inherit and burned it to the ground.

    Archimedes Porter and his brothers, knowing only that Mrs. Porter had burned down Miranda's house after their father had died placed her in a sanitarium. It was only years later that the information that Mrs. Porter had poisoned A. Porter surfaced, buried in the Doctor's reports and interviews with her.

    Miranda, William and Esmeralda remained a part of the Porter household now run by Archimedes Porter. He eventually discovered that Esmeralda was his niece and so when wife died tragically after having given birth to a precious daughter, he could think of no better person to raise his daughter.

    Esmeralda's name is given as Esmeralda Porter in Tarazan Alive, so does this mean she did not marry? Not necessarily, she could have married one of the Porter's other ex slaves or she could have married and had a family but after a few years the husband took off and she reassumed her maiden name. She had one or two children I am certain. This will be explored in an update of this small article.

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Farmer, Philip Jose
Tarzan Alive
Loridans, Chuck
The Porters

In search of Blackbeard
Article from the Historical Traveler

 © 2000 Dennis E. Power