1959 to 1969 – Weather Bureau Office Established at Thompson Field
Jackson Municipal Airport was served by a Delta airlines trunk line in the east-west direction, by a Chicago & Southern trunk line in the north-south direction, and by local flying schools. Hawkins Field soon became too small for the city’s aviation needs and a new airport was begun in western Rankin County east of Flowood. A Weather Bureau Office (WBO) was established in the terminal building of the new Allen C. Thompson Field on July 8, 1963. Mr. Don Munro was the Official-in-Charge of the office at that time.
During the 1960s, forecasts for south Mississippi continued to be made from the forecast office in New Orleans, while forecasts for north Mississippi were made in Memphis, Tennessee. The Weather Bureau Office at Thompson Field issued local adaptive forecasts and warnings. The Weather Bureau Airport Station at Hawkins Field continued to take weather observations.
Technology was continuing to advance, and with it, weather radar advanced. In 1969, a WSR-57 radar (named for the year in which it was built) was installed at the Jackson Weather Bureau Office (WBO) at Thompson Field. The old WSR-3 was de-commissioned and the Weather Bureau Airport Station at Hawkins Field was discontinued.
Much of this history is comprised of information from research done by Mr. Murray W. Smith, prepared in 1949 and Gary Grice, prepared on 2006.