Ralph E. Whittington, Dubbed ‘King of Porn,’ Dies

Ralph E. Whittington, Dubbed ‘King of Porn,’ Dies

GLEN BURNIE, Md.—Ralph E. Whittingon—dubbed by documentary filmmaker Jeff Kruilik to be the “King of Porn”—has died at the age of 74.

Whittington, who passed on Aug. 6, had a 36-year career before his retirement in 2000 as a curator and librarian for the Library of Congress. Using the knowledge he gained there on cataloging collections, he eventually started to build what’s widely considered to be the largest collection of pornographic materials anywhere. His collection included 8-mm films, books and magazines.

Before the Museum of Sex in New York City opened its doors, the organization purchased the entire collection: 848 boxes that contained 9.750 items, which took three moving trucks and a two-year period to move. Beginning in 2001, he served as a consultant for the museum and became a regular contributor to the Institute for Advanced Study for Human Sexuality in 2010.

Ralph’s work was featured in The Washington Post, Spin magazine, Rolling Stone, and numerous other publications. Ralph also appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Howard Stern Show, and other radio and news programs, and was the subject of two documentary shorts by filmmaker Jeff Krulik.

Ralph is survived by a daughter, Amanda, her husband, Mike, and a grandson, Spencer. A celebration of Ralph’s life will be scheduled at a later date. 

To plant a memorial tree in honor of Ralph Edward Whittington, visit the Heartfelt Sympathies Store.

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