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US Coast Guard
Cartoons

Was popeye in the navy or coast guard?

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January 08, 2011 4:13PM

While for most of his "career" he is portrayed as a civilian sailor, when in the military (ignoring the one "In the Army Now" episode), he was in the Coast Guard (source: Popeye the Sailor Meets Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves he was stationed at a Coast Guard small boat station). Much of the confusion can be caused by two facts:

1) During times of war (eg WWII ) the Coast Guard is transferred to the Department of the Navy. So although he was still a Coastie, he could have been serving on a Navy Ship. (Even today it is not uncommon to find a Coast Guard team serving on a Navy Ship.)

2) During the WWII era, the Coast Guard uniform and the Navy uniform were almost identical, with the minor differences being too small to show in a comic strip. Even today most of the formal uniforms of the two services are identical except for the design on the buttons.