Strother, David Hunter

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Strother, David Hunter Gender: M
born on 26 September 1816 at 10:00 (= 10:00 AM )
Place Martinsburg, West Virginia, 39n27, 77w58
Timezone LMT m77w58 (is local mean time)
Data source
Rodden Rating B
Collector: Scholfield
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_libcol.18.gif 03°23' s_mo.18.gif s_sagcol.18.gif 12°13 Asc.s_scocol.18.gif 21°57'

Portrait of David Hunter Strother 
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David Hunter Strother
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American magazine illustrator and writer, popularly known by his pseudonym, "Porte Crayon" (French, porte-crayon: "pencil/crayon holder").

He studied drawing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1829, and studied painting in New York in 1837-1838. After travels in the Midwest in 1838-1839, he embarked for Europe in the fall of 1839. Residing primarily in Italy, he returned to the United States in the spring of 1843. During the mid-1840s, Strother learned the craft of woodcut illustration in New York. He illsutrated a variety of publications before winning fame as both the author and illustrator of a series of humorous travelogues which appeared in Harpers Monthly magazine. Commencing in 1853 and published under the Pen name "Porte Crayon," these articles included The Virginia Canaan (1853), Virginia Illustrated (1854-1855), "North Carolina Illustrated" (1957), "A Winter in the South" (1857-1858)and "A Summer in New England" (1860-1861).

Despite his Virginia upbringing, Strother supported the Union during the Civil War. Though he hoped to remain neutral he eventually joined the Union Army and was assigned as a topographer due to his detailed knowledge of the Shenandoah Valley. During this time, Strother recorded his experiences in the war, which he would later publish in Harper's Monthly as "Personal Recollections of the War." His accounts are considered to be unique and are highly praised for their objective viewpoint. He was promoted colonel of the 3rd West Virginia Cavalry and involved in 30 battles, though never wounded, and was appointed a brevet brigadier general in 1865.

After the war, Strother wrote articles on a wide range of subjects including politics, race relations, and Chief Sitting Bull. He also made many drawings of people he met or observed going about their daily lives.

In 1879, Strother was appointed by President Rutherford B. Hayes to be the General Consul to Mexico. He served in this capacity until 1885 after which he returned to West Virginia. He died in Charles Town three years later on March 8, 1888.

Link to Wikipedia biography


Source Notes

Sy Scholfield quotes Cecil D. Eby's book, "Porte Crayon: The Life of David Hunter Strother" (University of North Carolina, 1960): "In a rented stone house on Burke Street, David Hunter Strother was born at ten o’clock in the morning of September 26, 1816."


  • Vocation : Art : Commercial artist
  • Vocation : Writers : Columnist/ journalist