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Porter is an unincorporated community in Montgomery County in Southeastern Texas within the Houston–The Woodlands–Sugar Land metropolitan area. In 2010, its population was estimated at 25,769. Porter is north of the Kingwood area of Houston.
As an unincorporated community, Porter does not have officially defined geographical boundaries. Instead, the area is unofficially defined by its zip code of 77365 due to the presence of a post office by that name in the area. No incorporated municipalities are within this zip code, with the census designated place of Porter Heights also having no official status beyond its use for census purposes. New Caney Independent School District, which encompasses the unincorporated communities of both Porter and New Caney, defines for the purposes of its attendance zones the entire zip code of 77365 as representing the entire “city” of Porter.
The earliest settlement in east Montgomery County developed in what is now New Caney, just north of Porter, along the banks of what is now known as Caney Creek. A group of cattle ranchers settled in the area in the 1860s, with the first reported settlement in 1862. When the Houston, East and West Texas Railroad built through the area in the late 1870s and early 1880s, an influx of settlers moved to various points along the new railway. One of these early residents was James Porter, who operated a sawmill. When the post office opened in 1892, the town was referred to as “Porters,” in reference possibly to a denied petition to the post office to name the town “Porter’s Mill.” In 1953, the post office decided to drop the “s,” resulting in the town’s current name of Porter.
In the 2010 United States Census, Zip Code 77365, generally defined as the unofficial boundary of Porter, had 25,769 people, 8,534 households, and 6,620 families. The racial makeup of the area was 79.8% White, 2.8% African American, 0.9% American Indian and Alaskan Native, 1.2% Asian, 13.0% were some other race, and 2.3% were two or more races.