Here’s another theory. I asked “jeeves” for the “history of the t-shirt.” One of the links that little gnome provided gave me this info.
In 1901, the P.H. Hanes Knitting Company (now just Hanes) introduced two-piece men’s underwear for catalogue sale. But it was the U.S. Navy, 12 years later, that inadvertently accelerated the evolution of underwear by issuing a revolutionary new item to its sailors. Seeking to avoid sexually scandalous sights exposed by its V-necked uniforms (read: hairy chests), the Navy issued a garment that featured short sleeves, a “crew” neckline (hence “crew neck”) and a vaguely “T”-shaped silhouette (hence “T-shirt”).
A few years later, the influx of sailors on leave during World War I brought about the truncating of the popular civilian “union suit” into a “singlet” or “jersey.” The price: 24 cents. The trend soon spread, and by World War II 12 million men were wearing the Navy’s newer, less expensive tee, which quickly became known as “skivvies.”
Take it for what it’s worth.
The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.