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Cargo hook
Catalog #: 2002.0026.01, Accession #: 2002.0026
Currently on display
From the Smithsonian Collection
Herb Mills used this hook for general, breakbulk cargo handling during his career as a longshoreman in San Francisco.
Physical Description
Artifact. This cargo hook measures 7.75" L x 4 5/8""W (across the handle) x 3" H (hook). The handle, which fits in the palm of a hand, is made of wood; the hook is metal and ends in a sharp point.
Date Made:
about 1960
Dates Used:
about 1960 - about 1990
San Francisco waterfront
Gift of Herb Mills
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 extended their reach and helped them lift heavy items. Most longshoremen owned several different types of hooks and altered the handles to suit their grip.

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