Serious discussions concerning renovating/updating Mallory Square are taking place. The issue of the area’s name has become part of the discussions. Should the name be changed. Stephen Mallory was a Confederate successionist who served as the Confederacy’s Secretary of the Navy.

My son in law Corey Malcom solved the problem.

Corey is a brilliant historian. Tom Hambright described him as a “world class historian.” The description befits him.

Corey is an archeologist by education. Early on worked in the Middle East. Served as the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum’s Director of Archeology for more than 30 years. Now Hambright’s successor as Monroe County Historian.

He is acknowledged and respected as the world authority re Spanish wrecks and slave ships. Along the way, he earned a Doctorate from England’s University of Huddersfield.

I dwell initially on Corey’s background and talents not because he is my son in law. Though I take pride in it. I dwell on his background because what he has discovered will surprise everyone: Mallory Square is NOT named after the secessionist Stephen Mallory.

Corey did some digging and discovered a 1961 letter from the Chairman of the Old Island Restoration Foundation, one of Key West’s first historic preservation groups.

Key West purchased the “Clyde-Mallory Docks” in 1952, but a plan for the area was not realized till 1960 when the Foundation began pushing for a restoration that highlighted the history of the docks. The Foundation took the lead in the transformation to “Mallory Square” which opened in 1961.

The Foundation’s Chairman Reta Savage wrote, “We have by unanimous decision named the area ‘Old Mallory Square’ in honor of the Clyde-Mallory Steamship Line.”

Corey reported Sawyer went on to make a prescient observation: “Needless to say when the dock and fishing pier are finished it will certainly be an attraction to the tourists.”

Good job, Corey! You saved Key West from some serious conflict re a name change.

Corey’s report can be read on a Monroe County Public Library, Florida Keys History Center, Facebook entry posted 12/19 titled “Who Is The Mallory Of Mallory Square? The Answer Is In The Archive.”

It is already Christmas in Tahiti, New Zealand and Australia. Less than 24 hours from now, it will be in Key West. An early Merry Christmas to one and all!


  1. I agree with your son-in-law’s efforts and willingness to research the issue of Mallory Square “naming” commemorating a Confederate ancestor. I do think it is important we be sensitive on this issue and not inadvertently “honor” traitors to our country.

    I also don’t think we need to do this in putative ways. In this case, asimple signage mentioning Mallory Square named after a the company that once owned the dock that existed previously, would be just fine.

    Parts of this country live under a dangerous creed that “the south shall rise again” without understanding the reality of defeat for a misguided (at best) cause. Believing only that some sort of resistance and rebellion is their birth right, or at least somehow OK.

    People today with confederate ancestors do not need to be punished for sins of their fathers, but at the same time should not insult the rest of us with glorification of them either.

  2. I agree with Terry and others who object to those statutes and the glorifications of Confederate separatists. It strikes me as horrible that so many of those that got tricked into the January 6th uprising in Washington, identified with some sort of visible Confederate symbols.

    I don’t think we have to expunge any mention of these actual people who back then were part of the confederacy, nor their descendants. No one I know, or know about, is calling for that. Just that they not be honored or glorified in any public way.

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