1957 was a record-breaking year for tornadoes, and PopSci was forecasting even rougher skies for 1958. As described by an official tornado watcher: '"They're coming so fast and thick ... that we've lost count.'"
To try to stop it, researchers wanted to learn more. Meteorologists asked for $5 million more a year from Congress to be able to study tornadoes whirling through the Midwest's Tornado Alley, then, hopefully, learn what they needed to do to stop them.
From the article "What We're Learning About Tornadoes."