Taxpayer ID number for an estate.

I was the executor of my mother's estate 30 years ago. I don't recall obtaining a tax-id for her estate. How long has the IRS been assigning tax-IDs to estates?
Separately: My brother, Jim, was the executor for a woman, "Anne", who died in 1985. Jim died last September. Buried in his desk was a brokerage account for Anne which still contained $34k. It took me four months to become successor executor to Anne's estate. When I applied for a tax-ID online, I received error #101, and was told I had to do it by mail. Well, it's been five weeks. They told me it would take 1-2 weeks. WTF do I do now?
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