Peace Memorial Museum (Heiwa Kinen Shiryokan)
This museum is situated on the outskirts of the park and comprises two buildings:
The East Building addresses Hiroshima's militaristic past and in great detail, explained why Hiroshima was selected as the blast site. As Imperial Headquarters, Hiroshima was home to Japan's military command centre as well as a military supply base. TV screens showed actual footage of the bomb being dropped and there was a 360 degree photograph taken by the Allies which showed Hiroshima's complete and utter destruction.
The West Building concentrated on the suffering caused by the atomic bomb in quite graphic detail. The effects of the blast on bodies, buildings and materials. Most of the photographs in the exhibit were of burned skin, charred remains of bodies and people with open wounds. There was also a bronze Buddha that had half melted in the blast and some granite steps showed a dark shadow that suggested someone had been sitting there at the time of the explosion. The shadow was all that remained. Tattered clothing and other personal effects were also on show accompanied by short biographies of their owners. Many of whom were children and teenagers and many of whom died in the blast. It was pretty horrific stuff. [more]
Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims
The Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims is dedicated to the bomb's victims and their experiences. Its Hall of Remembrance re-creates the bombed-out city as seen from the hypocenter through a panorama made of 140,000 tiles said to represent the number of people estimated to have died by the end of 1945. The rest of the memorial is a vast, computerised audiovisual library with information on victims and their histories, photos and belongings. The English leaflet not only provided excellent information but also gave me access to the large screen computers (I had to insert it to activate them). Admission was free and it was open the same hours as the rest of Peace Memorial Museum. [more]
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