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Guide to the Peggy Benesch Wickersham ferry papers.
1968-1970

Collection number: HMC-1053.
Creator: Benesch, Peggy.
Title: Peggy Benesch Wickersham ferry papers.
Dates: 1968-1970
Volume of collection: .02 cubic feet. 
Language of materials: Collection materials in English.
Collection summary: Peggy Benesch’s research notes and logs, interview transcripts, and her political science paper on the history of the Wickersham ferry in Alaska.

Biographical note:
Peggy Ann Higby Benesch was born November 29, 1929 in Fowler Colorado.  In 1950 she married George Benesch and they moved to Juneau. In Juneau, Peggy was involved with the statehood movement.  Later on in life she became active in the National Association of Legal Secretaries, American Association of University Women, and the American Association of Retired Persons. As for her career, from 1965-1968 she was assistant traffic manager for the state ferry system.  Peggy owned Alaska Travel Service in Juneau from 1965-1969.  In 1970 she moved to Anchorage with her husband and family where she later graduated with a teaching degree in 1974.  She was then hired by the Anchorage School District to create curriculum relating to hotel and motel tourism.

While pursuing her teaching degree, Peggy Benesch wrote a political science term paper on the history of the Wickersham ferry (formerly “M/S Britannica”) and the federal restrictions on the ferry.  A Swedish built ship, the Wickersham was subject to the Jones Act of 1920 that prohibited foreign vessels from transporting goods and people between U.S. ports.  Peggy Benesch explored these issues by looking at the language of the Jones Act and interviewing Ruth Allman (niece of Judge Wickersham), George Benesch (Chief of the Alaska Attorney General’s Transportation Section), and Captain H. J. Lockert, (Alaska’s Division of Marine Transportation Director).

Collection description:
The collection consists of Peggy Benesch’s completed term paper and its multiple drafts, Ruth Allman and Captain H.J. Lockert’s interview transcripts, and George Benesch’s notes from when he worked on the Panama registry for the Wickersham and the resulting agreement with the Marine Highway Corporation and the State of Alaska.

Arrangement: The collection retains its original order.

Digitized copies: Digital copies of collection material not available online. For information about obtaining digital copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Rights note: Archives and Special Collections owns copyright to Peggy Benesch’s papers.  Copyright restrictions may apply to interview transcripts.

Preferred citation: Peggy Benesch Wickersham ferry papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Works used in preparation of inventory:
Anchorage Times. "Obituary: Peggy Ann Benesch." October 23, 1988: B2.

Kiffer, Dave. "The Grand Ships of the Alaska Marine Highway System." Site News: Stories in the News, Ketchikan, Alaska. July 7, 2006. http://www.sitnews.us/Kiffer/MarineHighway/070706_marine_highway.html (accessed July 17, 2009).

Related materials: Archives and Special Collections also holds the George Benesch Alaska Marine Highway records (HMC-1052) that contain records he created while working with the Alaska Attorney General’s office. George Benesch is Peggy Benesch’s husband.

Acquisition note: The collection was donated by Dan Benesch in 2009 June.

Processing information: The collection arrived with the George Benesch’s papers.  Peggy Benesch’s papers were separated and made into its own collection. This collection was described by Mariecris Gatlabayan in 2009.