Cargo Hook

Cargo Hook

Usage conditions apply
Downloads
Description
Hand-held cargo hooks were the indispensable tools of longshoremen working on conventional (non-containerized) freighters. In the course of loading and discharging cargo they needed to grab, lift, and move various types and sizes of bags, boxes, and bales. The hooks, held firmly in a gloved hand, extended their reach and helped them lift heavy items. Most longshoremen owned several different types of hooks for moving different materials—from burlap sacks to wooden boxes—and altered the handles to suit their grip.
This cargo hook, made by a Latino blacksmith named Ortega in San Pedro, CA, was the owner’s favorite for lifting various types of bulk cargo. Its handle is well worn and the forged iron hook is stamped with the name “ORTEGA.” Donor Herb Mills used this hook during his career as a longshoreman in San Francisco. Mills was a member of Local 10 of the ILWU—the International Longshore and Warehouse Union—from 1963 to 1992.
Object Name
Cargo Hook
date made
ca 1960
used date
ca 1960-1990
Associated Place
United States: California, San Francisco
Measurements
overall: 27 cm x 11.5 cm x 9.5 cm; 10 5/8 in x 4 1/2 in x 3 3/4 in
ID Number
2002.0026.05
accession number
2002.0026
catalog number
2002.0026.05
Credit Line
Gift of Herbert A. Mills
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
Work
America on the Move
Transportation
Exhibition
America On The Move
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.

Comments

Add a comment about this object