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Historically, the uniforms of the Merchant Marine have varied depending on the particular shipping company, time period, and type of Merchant vessel. 

Right: 22nd century Merchant vessel bridge

Until the early twenty third century, there were no standard merchant uniforms and most merchant officers and crewman simply wore civilian clothing during the course of their duties. 

It was not until the year 2245 that the Merchant Marine began publishing standard uniform regulations and then only for vessels and crews under direct contract with the Federation Department of Transportation or attached to the Starfleet Auxiliary Fleet.  Planetary shipping companies, as well as several private cargo and freight companies, have often neglected any established uniforms, allowing their crews to wear practical clothing as desired.


The first established Merchant Marine uniform regulations were published in 2245 and defined a "standard uniform for the merchant service". 
These early Merchant Marine uniforms were mostly recycled Starfleet issued uniforms with modified insignia.  A simple insignia system also existed, with licensed Merchant officers displaying a single sleeve stripe and Merchant Masters displaying two.  Crewman wore the same uniform, but with no insignia.

merchant marine service dress (2271 - 2372)

In 2271, the Federation Department of Transportation issued the first standardized “Merchant Service Dress” uniform which applied mainly to officers and was used for shore or ceremonial functions.  The uniform consisted of a “retro style” Merchant jacket with upwards of four sleeve stripes to denote professional license.  Staff officers wore colored tabs between each stripe.  Regular merchant crewmen wore either a uniform with no sleeve stripes or simply civilian clothing.
The Merchant uniform of 2271 existed in circulation for over a century, with only slight modifications, until 2372.  The uniform was mainly used by merchant vessels under contract with the Federation Department of the Starfleet or the Department of Transportation; planetary merchant fleets and private corporations rarely employed this style of dress.


Due to the outbreak of the Dominion War in the 2370s, merchant uniforms were entirely redesigned to appear more as a standard Starfleet uniform; the sleeve stripe insignia remained unchanged but shifted to be displayed on shoulder boards.
By 2350, the Merchant Marine had also adopted a civilian scientist uniform for use onboard civilian science vessels.  The uniform was the same style as that used by Federation civilian science research teams and consisted of a two piece grey jumpsuit with silver trim lining.