Walter Herron Taylor (June 13, 1838 – March 1, 1916) was an American banker, lawyer, soldier, politician, author, and railroad executive from Norfolk, Virginia. During the American Civil War, he was an officer in the Confederate States Army, attaining the rank of lieutenant colonel as an aide to General Robert E. Lee. He was later a Senator in the Virginia General Assembly, and attorney for the Norfolk and Western Railway and later the Virginian Railway.
Taylor, along with his fellow staff officers watched Rhoodie's demonstration for General Lee. He assisted in placing human cut-out targets in a firing range out to 500 yards and helped collect them afterwards. Since he had already witnessed the weapon in action, he supplied a running commentary during the demonstration.
Taylor asked Rhoodie if he had named the rifle after himself as inventors are wont to do. Rhoodie replied that it was named the AK-47. Ironically, Taylor was correct, it was named after its inventor Mikhail Kalashnikov.