The Duties of a Staff Captain and a Marine Superintendent

Seumas

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Mar 25, 2019
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Glasgow, Scotland
I was wondering if any merchant navy experts could enlighten me as I am curious .....

What exactly are daily duties and responsibilities of a ship's Staff Captain and a companies Marine Superintendent ?

Thank You.
 

Scott Mills

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Jul 10, 2008
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Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
I was wondering if any merchant navy experts could enlighten me as I am curious .....

What exactly are daily duties and responsibilities of a ship's Staff Captain and a companies Marine Superintendent ?

Thank You.
I am no expert, but I believe on modern cruise ships, the staff captain is the man or woman in charge of all of the non-merchant navy staff. So everyone from the hospitality staff to the laundry staff. I also believe that the staff captain is the primary captain--not that the captain of the vessel does not also engage in this too--person who interfaces with the passengers.
 

Seumas

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Mar 25, 2019
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Glasgow, Scotland
Thank you kindly for that. Much appreciated.

I should have worded my original post much better - I was wondering more about what a Staff Captain and a Marine Superintendent's jobs involved in they heyday of the ocean liners.
 

Scott Mills

Member
Jul 10, 2008
525
38
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Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
Thank you kindly for that. Much appreciated.

I should have worded my original post much better - I was wondering more about what a Staff Captain and a Marine Superintendent's jobs involved in they heyday of the ocean liners.
I believe that "staff captains" are more modern invention, at least when it comes to the Titanic era--I am unsure about the late ocean liner period from the late 1930's and onward. As I recall, despite the Staff Captains responsibility in 'commanding' the hospitality crew, he or she also has a masters license, and is typically the person who would take command of a vessel should the ship captain become disabled (the position is sometimes called vice captain on some cruise lines). Because of this, if we were to compare the modern staff captain to the crew of Titanic, a modern staff captain would have some of the combined responsibilities of Titanic's Chief Officer Wilde and Chief Purser McElroy (who was also responsible for Titanic's stewards and victualizing staff).

Staff captains did not exist, as far as I know, in 1912. At least not on White Star vessels. However, someone who is more familiar with the history of staff captains might be able to give you a better answer.

Unfortunately, I have no idea about the role Marine Superintendent's play in today's merchant navy, so I cannot offer you any insights on what they might have done during the hey day of the ocean liner.
 

Seumas

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Mar 25, 2019
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Glasgow, Scotland
I believe the role was introduced on large British ships shortly after the Titanic disaster. The Lusitania for example had a Staff Captain.