After the Whalen’s birthday party, I plow through the inbox. The day before the party, Mary Habstritt, wife of Gerry Weinstein, and President of the national Society of Industrial Archeology, had sent an email:
"I was boning up on history of Whalen and saw that her old name S.T. Kiddoo was a mystery. I searched just the last name and got several threads about the surname on www.Ancestry.com that mentioned A history of the Kiddoo family in the United States, 1780-1981 which is full text on the Brigham Young University libraries digital collections site. On p. 188, it tells of a Solomon Thomas Kiddoo (1883-1965) who, after a career in banking in, of all places, Wall SD, became Secretary-Treasury of Fairbanks Morse. Hmmm. I think it cannot be a coincidence that the ship had the same name as an officer of
Bingo! We also know that Bushey was a distributor of Fairbanks Morse engines, so we are quite sure this is the person for whom the Mary A. Whalen was first named.
This is a lesson in the limitations of google (a reminder to myself not to work like the 20-somethings I lamented earlier.) In 2005, I had googled “S.T. Kiddoo” extensively looking for some history to explain the name, hoping to find some history that would make saving a tanker more Historic, that would appeal to preservationists. I’d found one S.T. Kiddoo in