The SS Josiah Parker was a Liberty ship built at Delta Shipbuilding Company, New Orleans, LA, during World War II. The cargo ship was named after Josiah Parker, an American politician, member of the United States House of Representatives from Virginia in the First through Sixth United States Congresses.
The ship owned by the United States War Shipping Administration was laid down on July 16, 1942, and launched September 26, 1942. In World War II there were as many as 210,000 who served in the U.S. Merchant Marine at its peak, working at a perilous wartime job. Asbestos was heavily used in shipbuilding at that time due to its ability to resist heat and insulate well which is why so many Navy and Merchant Marine personnel developed asbestos-related diseases later in life.