Cruise Ship Doorman’s Hat

Description
This hat, resembling the traditional hotel bellhop’s cap, was part of the uniform worn by a doorman, named Dadang, who worked aboard the Holland America Line’s cruise ship Zuiderdam in 2007. The hat is red and blue polyester, with a golden braid stretching across the top of the head from ear to ear. The uniform also included a tailored red jacket, dark blue trousers, and a name tag. As a food and beverage worker in the ship’s hotel department, Dadang reported directly to the dining room manager. His primary job was to welcome passengers into the dining room by opening the door, to ring the dinner chime, to serve breakfast pastries, and to perform other services in the restaurant arm of the organization. In 2009, a cruise ship job similar to this paid about $1,200 to $1,400 per month, with room and board provided on the ship.
Taking a cruise has become a popular leisure activity for many Americans. In 1980, 1.4 million Americans took a North American cruise and by 2005, that number had increased to 9.6 million. As both the number and size of cruise ships have grown, the number of people required to keep them running smoothly and to serve the needs of passengers has increased as well. Aboard the Zuiderdam, 800 crew work around the clock to fulfill the needs of 1,848 passengers.
Cruise ship employees are recruited from around the world for a wide variety of jobs, from waiters to chefs, housekeepers to hair and nail technicians, and shop managers to wine auctioneers. For the many jobs requiring interaction with passengers, workers must have a good command of English, and English-speaking workers from the Philippines or Indonesia (like Dadang) fill many hospitality jobs aboard modern cruise ships. Americans are not typically attracted to most cruise-ship hospitality and service jobs because of low wages, long workdays at sea, and the hardship of having to be away from home and family for long periods of time.
Object Name
cap
date made
ca 2007
Physical Description
polyester fabric (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 3 in x 7 1/2 in; 7.62 cm x 19.05 cm
ID Number
2007.0172.04
catalog number
2007.0172.04
accession number
2007.0172
subject
Sailing Ships
Uniforms
Clothing & Accessories
Work
Fishing
event
Contemporary United States
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
Exhibition
On the Water
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Holland America Line
Publication title
On the Water online exhibition
Publication URL
http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthewater

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

**Please read before submitting the form**

Have a comment or question about this object to share with the community? Please use the form below. Selected comments will appear on this page and may receive a museum response (but we can't promise). Please note that we generally cannot answer questions about the history, rarity, or value of your personal artifacts.

Have a question about anything else, or would you prefer a personal response? Please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.