How the landlocked state of Nebraska got its own navy

In 1930, Nebraska Gov. Charles Bryan decided to take a little vacation, and while he was gone, he left Lt. Gov. T.W. Metcalfe in charge of the state.

The power went straight to his head, and thus the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska was founded as a way for Metcalfe to appoint his friends as admirals. He did this even though — you might notice through the simple act of glancing at a map — Nebraska has absolutely no ocean access. In fact, it is the only state in the entire country that is triply landlocked.

Despite the lack of necessity for standing maritime security forces, the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska continues on, and it has become tradition for admiralships to be be bestowed on notable Nebraskans.

Ultimately, those who have the title of admiral in the Nebraska Navy conferred upon them have absolutely no military authority whatsoever. The title is purely symbolic, similar to the Kentucky Colonels and the Rhode Island Commodores.

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