Peace Memorial Museum

This is the main attraction in the Peace Park and, indeed, probably in all of Hiroshima.

Surrounded by school children (I read once that all Japanese school children are required to visit Hiroshima once; on the strength of this morning’s visit, I’m inclined to believe it), I entered the west building.

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Here is a history of Hiroshima from ancient times through to the time of the second world war. Immediately after, a powerful exhibit attempts to explain how and why (it was a clear day) the bomb was used and Hiroshima targetted.

One of my favourite books being Richard Rhodes’ “The Making of the Atomic Bomb” – a classic exploration of early twentieth century physics through the first world war and the construction and use of the atomic bomb – it was fascinating to see the letter sent by Einstein to Roosevelt noting the possibility of constructing an atomic weapon.

After this, some detailed models illustrate the city before and after the blast: the latter, unfortunately, clearly took less time to construct:

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Much of the east building demonstrates graphically the effects of the bomb upon people and buildings. Numerous items of clothing, masonry and, especially, melted rooftiles.

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A worthy museum and one worthy of a couple of hours of your time. Afterwards, I headed straight for some food to try and cheer up.

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