Common Threads Navy
With more than 336,000 active-duty personnel, 101,000 reservists and nearly 300 ships, the U.S. Navy has grown into one of the largest and most respected maritime forces in the world since its founding in 1775. Missions are carried out at sea, on land and in the air and the various uniforms reflect that versatility.
Scroll the interactive display to see how the uniform has changed over time.
Disclaimer: In an attempt to simplify complex details, we’re featuring only enlisted combat uniforms and regulation equipment. Modern sailors are dressed in uniforms used during well-known war periods, beginning with the War of 1812 and not the Revolutionary War, as the idea of uniforms as we think of them today was only slowly being established.