By: Paul W. Wittmer

The history of this project is based on the records of the war patrols of the USS Tinosa (SS-283). The archived films were purchased when we started putting Crew 283 together, sometime about the early 1980's. Getting the information off the microfilms and on paper was a major chore. It was shipmate Don Pierson who took on the task of doing this work. The copied documents were put into two binders and 11 sets were produced. Al Watrous received one set.

It was Al, who took it upon himself to prepare an accurate account of Tinosa's war patrols during the period 1985 through 1988. These reports were first presented as a series of articles in issues of our newsletter, "The Tinosa Blatt".

The thought of expanding on the articles and producing a book called "Encounter" was discussed, planned and acted on. Al Watrous and Paul Wittmer did the major research and preparation work. The artwork was prepared and donated by shipmate Jack Monroe. Many other shipmates were called upon to contribute proof reading, research findings and personal articles for inclusion in the book.

This represented one of the biggest, challenging and hectic projects that I have been privileged to work on with a Tinosa shipmate. Every word, sentence, paragraph and page had to be keyed into my first computer, using what has to be called a dinosaur of a word processing program. The work had to be arranged, formatted, printed, mailed, proofed, corrected and modified many times until Al and I was satisfied. The hard copy presentation was made "camera ready" prior to delivering the final copy to a printer; otherwise the cost would have been prohibitive.

The effort required a crash course on the arts and science of book printing, binding and publishing. We insisted on a hard cover and archive quality paper stock.

Funds were solicited from members of Crew 283, orders were placed, the printer and the bindery service were paid and we took delivery of 1,000 copies of a quality book, bound in a hard cover with a dust jacket and printed on "acid free" paper.

The book was popular among Tinosa supporters, but it would have to be classified as a business failure. Sales were not sufficient to justify the printing and binding costs. It was a very costly volunteer project for Watrous and myself; but the learning experiences were most rewarding.

At the business meeting of Crew 283, USS Tinosa, WWII Sub Vets Inc., held in Phoenix, 2000; it was decided that an edited version of this important history would be produced and placed on a Tinosa web site.

Please note presentation on the web site is limited and is primarily a historic record of Tinosa's actions during WWII.