This site is for and about Navy Quartermasters,
not specifically Submarine Quartermasters. There seems to be a
dearth of QM pages that are not about Army quartermasters;
this site is intended to help correct that.
New London Ledge Light, New London, CT
My second captain told me I had the most powerful job on board.
I could literally run us aground and no one could stop it. Loved
the rate and challenge especially during "spec-ops". Would go back
and do it again in a heartbeat. --QM2 Jeff Underwood*
I am proud to be among the select few people who accept the challenge and responsibility that this job entails. --SN Shane Melott
Thousands of tons of steel, surging through the ocean at your direction. The responsibility for the safety of the entire crew rests on your shoulders. The Commanding Officer is depending on you to guide his ship accurately on its assignment.
Officer of the Deck? No: the Quartermaster of the Watch (QMOW), often a seaman or third-class petty officer, responsible for the safe navigation of the ship.
QM is the greatest job in the world, one of the true navy jobs. --QM2 Staley
Every sailor will tell you that theirs is the best rate in the Navy. It is only natural: if they didn't think so, they wouldn't be doing it. QMs are no different; what sets them apart are the reasons they feel that way. A mechanic takes satisfaction from tinkering with machinery; electronics technicians from the operation of exotic equipment. A Quartermaster revels in wind and wave, in dealing with the vagaries of the sea, in solving a complex problem of navigation with all the tools at his disposal and that dash of instinct, experience, and skill that still make it an art.
I loved my work. Most folks don't know what a QM is. Although it was the early 60's there was nothing better than being on the bridge at sunrise!! --Mark Stephenson
You know, I'm getting really tired of telling people I was a Quartermaster in the Navy and having them react by saying, "Oh, you folded socks..." --QM2 Bill Courson
Unsung and unappreciated is the Quartermaster's lot in life; uninformed civilians seem to automatically conflate the job of quartermaster in Another Service with the naval rate. There were people engaged in the work of Quartermasters on ships as far back as there were ships: see the article entitled, "What Is A QM?" That the Army co-opted a bit of Naval terminology is not surprising; that they in the process bent the meaning entirely out of shape is, alas, only to be expected.
Went through one of the first ET/QM/IC pipelines. Found my place at the QM stand, along with some of the Navy's best. I loved the challenge and pride we took in our work, I will miss it. --ET2/SS Dustin Gomez
The webmaster for qmss.com was a Quartermaster in the US Submarine Service. Regrettably, the Navy has seen fit to combine the submarine QM rate with that of Navigation Electronics Technician. With the continued improvement to navigation systems, and the attendant specialization required to operate and maintain it, it makes a bureaucratic type of sense; those die-hards wedded to the Old Ways can only hope that the NavETs acquire the same respect for the navigational art imbued in the Quartermaster, and carry forward the tradition with pride, under another name.
Glad to see someone else still appreciative of the art and science of this wonderful rate. I loved shooting stars, moon lines, LAN, doing a DR Track, doing the posit reports and knowing that I was unique on board my ship. --QM1/SS Buck Conrad
Dead reckoned my way through two years, loved every bit of it. --Glen Childers
That said, this is a site devoted to all Quartermasters, and all navigators of any stripe; to those who cherish the feeling of guiding their craft whatever its form. The pride in knowing the OOD depended on you to keep him on track, on time, and out of trouble. The frenetic pace of ordered activity when piloting in restricted waters. The jump to comply by a visiting admiral when you warn him to keep his coffee cup off the chart. The moment of truth when a fix is compared to your DR. Matters small and large; the sum of knowledge and experience that make up the Quartermaster rate.
Read the articles; enjoy the sea stories; check out the books and links: and make your own contributions! Keep the tradition alive.
*Quotes taken from comments made in the qmss.com Deck Log