Woman of the Century/Alice Hobbins Porter
PORTER, Mrs. Alice Hobbins, journalist, born in Staffordshire, Eng., 9th February, 1854. She is a daughter of Joseph Hobbins, M. D., Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, and of Sarah Badger Jackson, of Newton, Mass., a descendant on her father's side of the famous Jackson family, which gave forty of its men, including Gen. Michael Jackson, the friend of Washington, to the Revolutionary War, and on her mother's side from the Russell family, of Rhode Island. Jonathan Russell, her grand-uncle, was one of the commissioners who negotiated the concluding treaty with Great Britain in Ghent, and later was minister plenipotentiary to Sweden. His wife was educated in the school of Madame Campan, in St. Germain, and received a gold medal from Napoleon I, in 1807, for her skill in drawing and painting. She afterwards painted under Benjamin West, who gave her his palette of colors which, with some drawings presented to her by Verney, are still preserved in the family. ALICE HOBBINS PORTER. Mrs. Porter's early life was spent in Madison, Wis. In 1877 she went to Chicago and made her first venture in journalism as correspondent for the Milwaukee "Sentinel" and the Cincinnati "Enquirer," contributing frequently to the Chicago "Times" and "News," and to the Wisconsin "State Journal." She became a member of the "Inter-Ocean" staff and was promoted successively to religious editor, dramatic editor, and finally as writer of special articles. In 1879 she went to New York as correspondent for several western newspapers, and while there was regularly on the staff of the New York "Graphic," and a frequent contributor to the New York "Sun," and occasionally to the "Herald" and "World." She contributed to "Harper's Magazine" and "Bradstreet's," and wrote the prize sketch in a Christmas number of the "Spirit of the Times," which was entirely made up of contributions from the eight best-known women correspondents of America. Later she visited Europe, twice as correspondent for New York and western papers, and after she became the wife or Robert P. Porter, journalist and statistician. she accompanied him on his industrial investigations abroad. She wrote a series of letters for a syndicate, embracing thirty of the principal journals of the country, and special letters to the New York " World," Philadelphia "Press," "National Tribune," and. other papers most of which were reprinted in England. Up to the time of her marriage she wrote principally under the pen-name "Cress," When Mr. Porter founded the New York "Press." in 1887, Mrs. Porter joined the editorial staff and contributed special articles, which attracted wide-spread attention. She edited Mr. Porter's letters and essays on the condition of the working classes abroad. During Mr. Porter's residence in Washington as superintendent of census, Mrs. Porter has been occupied with family cares and social obligations, and has written only in aid of working women, educational projects and in behalf of suffering children. She as recently assumed the editorship of a paper in eastern Tennessee, in the development of which part of the country Mr. Porter is greatly interested.