Navy, Department of

Directed by a civilian secretary of the navy, the Department of the Navy oversees the administration of the U.S. Navy, including the construction, maintenance, and repair of ships; the recruiting, training, and mobilization of navy and Marine Corps personnel; equipment and supply; and related matters. Currently, the secretary of the navy is assisted by the undersecretary of the navy and four assistant secretaries and advised by the chief of naval operations and commandant of the Marine Corps, respectively, the senior navy and marine officers. This entry discusses the history of the U.S. Department of the Navy and its structure and examines the impact of influential secretaries of the navy.

During the Revolutionary War, the Continental Navy passed through several administrative arrangements. Congress established a 3-man Marine ...

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