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Robert Fulton Porter ’58

Published in Oct. 20, 2004, issue

Robert Fulton Porter (known to all as "Steamboat") died of cancer Dec. 29, 2002.

Originally from Harlan, Ky., Steamboat came to Princeton after graduating from Woodberry Forest School. He played 150-pound football and rugby, and was a member of Cottage Club. He initially joined Central National Bank in Richmond, Va., rising to the position of vice president, and in his spare time founded, played, and refereed games for the Richmond Rugby Football Club. In 1970 he moved to Chapel Hill to study art history, and received his PhD from the University of North Carolina in 1974.

His first teaching position was at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, where he taught in the art department and then in the humanities department for nine years. Upon moving to Charlotte he taught at Queens University, becoming chairman of the Division of Fine Arts. An enthusiastic teacher, he appreciated works of art that challenged the imagination. Steamboat thrived on creating large and small sculptures and had several shows in Virginia and North Carolina.

The class sends its deepest sympathy to his wife, Mary Porter; son Robert III and his wife, Martha, and their daughters Jennifer and Maggie; and son Christopher Todd and his wife, Gretchen.

The Class of 1958

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