O. Henry Short Story Writer born on September 11, 1862

ohenrySeptember 11, 1862 – Birthday of Austin resident and short story writer, William Sydney Porter better known as O. Henry.

Porter was born North Carolina and moved to Austin, Texas in 1884. In Austin Porter worked as a draftsman for the general land office and later as a teller for the First National Bank. Porter left the bank a few years later and founded the Rolling Stone, a weekly humor newspaper. The newspaper was not successful and he became a columnist for the Houston Daily Post.

In 1898 Porter was found guilty of embezzlement during his employment at the First National Bank in Austin and sentenced to five years in prison. While in prison Porter wrote dozens of short stories.

On or about 1901, Porter was released from prison and changed his name to O. Henry to hide his true identity. Porter moved to New York City where he published over 300 short stories and was fondly thought to be America’s favorite short story writer.

Porter was an alcoholic and penniless when he died on June 5, 1910 at the age of forty-seven. 

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