Super 8 Filmmaker John Porter, Toronto, Canada
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John's Father's Family in Toronto since 1830
John's great great grandfather William Porter
at age 22, came from Yorkshire, England and landed in Philadelphia
in 1819. He was among the first contractors building the first
Erie, Welland and Rideau Canals before he settled in 1830, on
a farm in Toronto Gore Township, Ontario outside of the hamlet
of Claireville on the very northwest corner of today's Metropolitan
Toronto. In 1831 his younger brother
John Porter, then age 21, came over from Yorkshire and settled
on property in Vaughan Township, also outside Claireville, just
across the road from William. They died there and are buried with many
of their family in Claireville / Hilltop Gore Cemetery.
John's Lost Cousins in Toronto
John Porter (1810-1894) and his wife Anna
William Porter (1797-1866) and his wife Eliza
Hughes Porter (1808-1880)
Son William Porter (1835-1912) was a local politician and became Warden of Peel County in 1886. He and his wife Mary Pexton Porter (1837-1897) bore 8 children, but they and most of their descendants have become lost to today's John Porter. They included William Pexton Porter (18??-?), Arthur Pexton Porter (1870-1907), Mary Elizabeth Porter (1872-?), Alice Porter (1859-?), and possibly John J. Porter and George Porter. Some of the sons may have gone West.
John Lawrence (Larry) Porter (1909-2003) belonged to a family of structural engineers in Southern Ontario, including other John Porters.
Larry's great grandfather William Porter (1797-1866)
was among the first contractors building the Erie (USA), Welland
and Rideau (Ontario) Canals, throughout the 1820s. One of William's
sons, Larry's grandfather, John Hughes Porter (1837-1920) built
a large lumber and grain mill and a large house in Hagersville,
Ontario in the 1870s.
His father working in Roanoke, Larry studied Chemical Engineering at the Virginia Polytechnical Institute in nearby Blacksburg, earning a Research Fellowship and an Honours Master Degree with top grades in 1934. For the next 37 years, mostly in Toronto, he worked as a Research Chemical Engineer for the British American Oil Co., later to become Gulf Oil Canada, then Petro Canada.
Larry's hobby was Astrophysics and after retiring in 1971, although legally blind, he returned to University and completed his life-long theoretical paper Wave Mechanics of the Solar System which applies the structure of the atom (Quantum Mechanics) to the structure of the Solar System. His attempts to get it published were refused for it being too speculative.
Wave Mechanics of the Solar System
The structure of the Solar System remains unsolved
after 2000 years of investigation.
The hypothesis that the solar system has some form of symmetry has been put forward since "Pythagorus maintained that the universe sings and is constructed in accordance with harmony" (Hippolytos, 400 B.C.). During his lifetime, Kepler believed that a resonant structure created order in the solar system. Many investigators have tried to deduce a structure which would explain the well-known Titius-Bode law of planetary distances since it first appeared in 1766. More recently, MacDonald and Fish suggested that there is a simple relationship between the angular momenta and the masses of the planets.
Molochanov, by means of a statistical analysis, postulated a resonant structure for the solar system. Dermott, who rejected Molochanov's statistics, related orbital periods of the planets and satellites to whole numbers with some degree of success. Barnothy, for the quinquencentennial anniversary of the birth of Copernicus, presented a quantum theory of the solar system based on angular momenta of the planets. Barnothy referred to Bohr's model of the hydrogen atom, and suggested a similar structure for the solar system. Finally, Bagby compared the Titius-Bode rule to the Bohr hydrogen atom. Data presented in this paper support the conjecture that the solar system does indeed have resonant structure which is analogous to the Rutherford-Bohr model for the hydrogen atom, and to the later de Groglie-Schrodinger explanation of the stability of the Bohr atom by wave mechanics.
2. A basic structure revealed.
When Bohr formulated his theory of the hydrogen atom he found that only one variable was necessary, i.e. the radius of the orbit of the electron. In this miniature "solar system", the mass and other characteristics of the orbiting element, the electron, were assumed to be constant. By contrast, in the real solar system, both mass and volume of the planets vary from orbit to orbit in a complex manner. Combination of mass and volume in the form of density (e) lessens the complexity. When e is multiplied by R2, where R is the radius (semi-major axis) of the orbit, the product, eR2, can be termed moment of inertia density, an extension of the usual moment of inertia, I (where I = MR2; M = mass of planet). Table 1 lists the values of e, R, and eR2 for the planets. All data, except where otherwise noted, are from C.W. Allen's Astrophysical Quantities (3rd edition, Athlone Press, London, 1973).
A striking result is obtained when values of eR2 are plotted against the numbers from one to ten on log-log paper. In Fig. 1 the values of eR2 have been divided by that for the planet Mercury to simplify the presentation, and the scale of the x-axis has been expanded to clarify the details. The values of eR2/eR2 Mercury are given in Table 1. Unlike the Bohr atom, which would produce a straight line for the values of log 1 versus log N, there are three groups of planets which can be identified with a primary number, N, and secondary value, n, the latter being the slope of the particular line on which the planets lie in the graph. Values for N and n are shown in Fig. 1 and Table 1. Together, these two numbers, N and n, seem to exhibit the same characteristics as do quantum numbers in the Bohr theory of the atom - that of determining discrete values, or eigenvalues, with the corresponding eigenstates.
The grouping of the planets in three interconnected sets is reminiscent of the three sets of interconnected spertral lines emitted by the hydrogen atom, namely the Lyman, Balmer, and Paschen series, which were basic to Bohr's theory of the hydrogen atom.
John Porter with his parents Larry & Marion at the premiere of his film Toy Catalogue 3, shown April 17 - May 18, 1996 at YYZ Gallery, 1087 Queen St. W., Toronto.
Family Home Movies 1944-1961
21 reels, at 50 feet or 3 minutes each. Colour, unless noted black & white.
1. 1944 - Susan (age 2) eating, bathing, sleeping. Marion and Larry. (Black & white.)
2. 1947 - Susan, Nancy (age 3), Marion and Larry in Clarkson, indoors and outdoors.
3. 1948? - John (months old), Susan and Nancy. Marion and Larry.
4. 1949 - Margaret Johnston in Florida (shot by
6. 1950 - Parade, swimming & comic divers at dock at Geneva Park, Lake Couchiching.
7. 1950 - John, Nancy and Susan. John (age 1?) with ice cream and in bathtub.
8. 1951 - John on horse. Nancy and Susan swimming, and parade at Geneva Park.
9. 1951 - Family with car. Susan and Nancy. 38
Bracondale Hill Rd. outdoors.
10. 1951 - Johnston family outdoors. Family reunion in 38 Bracondale Hill Rd. backyard.
11. 1951 - Nancy & Susan in an egg-on-spoon race. Christmas at 38 Bracondale Hill Rd.
12. 1952 - Family car on St. Clements Ave.
13. 1952 - Snow on St. Clements Ave.
14. 1953 - Car ride in the country. Marion and
Larry. John dressed in ladies clothing.
15. 1953 - Larry's plane flight. Los Angeles. USA Super Bowl football game. Las Vegas.
16. 1953 - John and Susan at Geneva Park, Lake
17. 1953 - John playing in sand with arm in a cast. Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia.
18. 1954 - Johnston family. Kids swimming. Birthday party outside 448 St. Clements Ave.
19. 1954 - Susan, Nancy and John in the country. "Patches". Johnston family. Cathleen.
20. 1955 - Family reunion in 38 Bracondale Hill Rd. backyard. Kids acting. Picnic.
21. 1961 - Susan horse-riding. Porters' dog "Patches". Cookes Line and Johnston family.
See Also - New, Complete List of Johnston Family Home Movies 1947-2005.