I thought that maybe the client_id that Mosquitto provided to anonymous clients may somehow be tied to the hardware, MAC address, or IP address. I tried loading the code on to yet another esp8266 that I have. When it does the mqtt.connect() it gets the same client_id from Mosquitto as the other two.
I have my router configured to assign each esp8266 (I have six of them so far) a different IP address. But each device gets the same IP each time it connects. Apparently Mosquitto does not pay attention to the IP address of the clients.
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