The Navy bean did indeed receive its name for being a staple of the US Navy diet during the early 20th century. The US Navy chose this bean because it is packed with nutrition, holds well and is inexpensive. Navy beans are also known by other names like haricot beans, Boston beans and Yankee beans. These beans are used in Boston baked beans, a prevalent dish in Boston that gives the city the nickname Bean Town. Navy beans have since been adopted by Massachusetts as the official state bean. Navy beans are found in the famous Senate bean soup that has been on the menu every day since 1903 in the US Senate’s restaurant.
The term haricot bean translates to the bean bean. (haricot = bean in French) You probably recognize the haricot vert as the long French green bean.