Thomas J. Kehoe
Thomas J. Kehoe at the time of this writing is the assistant United States inspector of boilers for the Chicago district, and is well qualified for the position he occupies. Before his appointment to the United States service he was an ardent and popular member of the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, but was obliged to withdraw from that body. He is the son of Thomas and Bridget (Scott) Kehoe, and was born in Chicago, March 18, 1851. Thomas Kehoe, the father, is a native of County Kildare, Ireland, and emigrated to the United States in 1844, making his home in New York about four years. The mother also came from County Kildare, Ireland, the same year, and they were married in New York City. They removed to Chicago in 1848, where the father opened a tailor shop, he having learned that trade from his father, who carried on the business in Ireland. Richard Scott, the grand- father on the maternal side, carried on a meat market. At the commencement of the Civil war Mr. Scott enlisted in the Twenty-third Ill. Vol. Inf., Colonel Mulligan, one of the regiments composing the Irish brigade, and served until the close of the war. Thomas J. Kehoe was also a patriot of the Civil war, and was three times wounded; he enlisted May 3, 1862, in the Eighty-eighth Illinois Infantry, or as it was locally known in Chicago, the Second Board of Trade Regiment of Volunteers. His regiment served under General Sherman, and Mr. Kehoe was wounded at Stone River and lay in the hospital three weeks, his two subsequent wounds not proving so serious, however. On his recovery he rejoined his regiment, and served with honor throughout that commander's campaigns through Georgia and the Carolinas, and was present at the Grand Review of the great army of Western warriors in Washington. Mr. Kehoe participated with his regiment at the battles of Lookout Mountain, Kenesaw Mountain, Marietta, Atlanta, Lovejoy and Bentonville, the last great battle of the war, and numerous other smaller engagements. He was honorably discharged in the fall of 1865 at Camp Douglas, Chicago. To Thomas and Bridget (Scott) Kehoe were born seven children, namely: (1) Bridget Adelia, who married James Riley, a volunteer soldier of Chicago Board of Trade battery, and now sergeant of police in Chicago; she died in 1876. (2) Mary, now the wife of John Williams, of Chicago. (3) Richard, who went steam- boating seven years with the purpose of becoming a marine engineer, but is now engaged as a millright in Seattle, Washington. (4) William H., who is in the tailoring business in Chicago. (5) Annie, who became the wife of William Johnson, a livery man in Spokane Falls, Washington. (6) Martha who wedded Charles Smith, a butcher in the employ of P.D. Armour, of Chicago; and (7) Thomas J., the subject of this sketch.
Thomas J. Kehoe acquired his education in the public schools of Chicago, and at the age of thirteen years he entered the employ of William Baganwanth & Son, to learn the machinist's trade, remaining with them two and a half years, after which he worked in the machine shop of Wilson & Burkhart, on the north pier, about six months. He then took charge of a stationary engine for the printing establishment of Jones, Perdue & Small, locating on the corner of Lake and Clark streets, seven months. In the fall of 1866, he decided to take up the life of a sailor and shipped as boy on the schooner George W. Worthington. The next year, with the purpose of becoming a marine engineer, he joined the tug E. Van Dalsen, as fireman, working in J. Murphy's machine shop that winter. In the spring of 1868 he shipped as fireman on the tugs R. Prindiville and Oriole; in 1869, on the tug F.S. Butler; in 1870, on the tug O.B. Green, and in 1871 he entered the employ of the Vessel Owners Towing Company, as fireman on the new tugs Rebel and J.L. Higgie, remaining with that company two seasons and taking out his license as marine engineer in 1872 and was appointed to the tug Ada Allen. He then engineered the tug A.A. Parker two seasons and in the spring of 1875 was appointed engineer of the tug William L. Ewing; in 1876 chief on the steamer George Dunbar, with Capt. James Hogan. The next year he stopped ashore as engineer of the Rock Island B elevator in Chicago, after which he went as engineer on the tug Frank R. Crane, in the employ of the Chicago Dredge and Dock Company, until the fall of 1883, going as master of the tug A.S. Allen part of a season. In the spring of 1884 he entered the employ of the Carsley & East Manufacturing Company, of Chicago, as engineer of their plant, remaining nine years.
In September, 1893, Mr. Kehoe was appointed assistant United States inspector of boilers for the Chicago district and takes pride in fulfilling the duties of that office conscientiously. He has twenty-four issues of marine engineer's license, three of second- class pilot's papers and a Chicago certificate of competency as stationary engineer. He is a member of the National Union Benevolent Association and of the Independent Order of Forresters.
On December 23, 1872, Mr. Kehoe was wedded to Miss Ellen, daughter of Michael and Ann (Reynolds) Martin, of Chicago. The family homestead is situated at No. 360 East Twenty- third street, Chicago, Illinois.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.