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Ship's hold with a tight stow

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Ship's hold with a tight stow
Photograph by Otto Hagel, from Men and Machines, 1963; reproduced by permission of the Center for Creative Photography; 1998 The University of Arizona Foundation


This object appears in the following sections:

Transforming the Waterfront: San Francisco and Oakland, California, 1960–1970
Transforming the Waterfront: San Francisco and Oakland, California, 1960–1970 — At Work on the Waterfront

Longshoreman's cap

Container crane operator

Slingload of cargo

Ship's hold with a tight stow
Currently on display
Not a part of the official Smithsonian Collection
This photograph appears in the book, Men and Machines, A Story About Longshoring on the West Coast Waterfront, a photo essay by Otto Hagel published in 1963, shortly after the first Mechanization and Modernization Agreement was put into practice. It shows three longshoremen handling boxes of "Heavy Duty Brake Fluid" in the hold of a ship. The rows of boxes are fairly neat, indicating a job done right, or "a tight stow." In San Francisco, if a worker made the top tier of cargo perfect to hide a sloppily handled job, it was called putting a "Yankee face" on the cargo. The man in the center of the photograph is wearing the "usual rig" of traditional longshoremen: a white cap and "hickory" (blue and white striped) shirt.
Physical Description
Date Made:
about 1960
Dates Used:
about 1960 - about 1960
Conventional (non-containerized) longshore work involved gangs of men working together to load or discharge various types of cargo. Each ship represented a new set of challenges and longshoremen took pride in their ability to figure out how best to deal with different cargos and different space requirements.
Related People, Places, and Events
Otto Hagel

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