View of Roy L. Anderson
The narrative of Mr. Anderson has been included to supplement that
of Ms. Anderson and since he also worked for the Weather Bureau.
with the Weather Bureau in December, 1941, at Lander, Wyoming, and
was promoted and transferred to Rapid City, South Dakota, in July,
1942. I enlisted in the military in April, 1943. (My wife, Hope Anderson,
took my place at Lander while I was in the service.) Then in February,
1946, my military service ended and I returned to work for the Weather
Bureau at Lander. I worked there until fall when I went to UCLA to
get my BA...back to Lander until April, 1948...then to Great Falls
as a weather forecaster until my retirement in December, 1974. Before
working for the Weather Bureau I had experience in farming, auto mechanics,
and electrical wiring - plus two years in college. I took a civil
service exam for Weather Bureau work...was accepted about three years
later. I had seen a notice on the college bulletin board and applied.
I wanted to work for the Weather Bureau for job security and because
I liked the work, especially the challenge of weather forecasting.
first station in Lander, Wyoming, the MIC gave me excellent training
in weather observations. I was welcomed in a very friendly manner.
The morale on station was excellent. We enjoyed our work and enjoyed
doing the job to the best of our abilities. My first impression was
that it was a good place to work...but with frequent night shifts.
My duties included taking 3 and 6 hourly surface observations and
entering the data in record books. Later I took RAOB soundings, and
after 1948 I did aviation and general weather forecasting. I rotated
through all shifts, working eight hours per day, five days per week.
(Sometimes 6 on - 2 off until a 4-day weekend.) At first there were
two men, then five men at Rapid City, later, after 1948, at Great
Falls usually 20 men and four women. My starting pay was $1440, promoted
to $1620 at Rapid City (1942-43).
for the Weather Bureau we were doing an important job for the government
and the nation. I would do it again, because I liked the challenge
of the work. I think that my major contributions included reliability,
always on duty as scheduled. The high point of my Weather Bureau career
was promotion to aviation forecaster at Great Falls, Montana, in 1948.
At Rapid City, South Dakota, during winter the wind was so strong
the radiosonde balloon at release was at such a low elevation angle
the blowing snow obscured the balloon, and although the sky was clear
the radiosonde balloon would not be sighted at all, preventing wind
direction data...this sometimes went on for 4 days at a time. Most
personal note, while I was in the Army my wife "held my job" in the
Weather Bureau at Lander, Wyoming. After the war I returned to work
at Lander, taking the position my wife had occupied, and later was
promoted to forecaster in Great Falls...retired in 1974, and this
year, September 29, 1990, my wife Hope and I are celebrating our Golden
Wedding Anniversary...both still in good health. We are enjoying retired
life. Weather Bureau employment helped make it a good life for both