Who could forget one of the most tragic events of history? The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II which caused the death of 129,000 people still strikes a feeling of grief today.
To commemorate the said event and restore world peace, Japan established the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum in the very center of Hiroshima. This is one of the most popular destinations for tourists and is where most of Japan’s education fieldtrips are held. The museum was established in August 1955, documenting and preserving materials recovered from the tragedy.
Here are some of the most heart-rending artifacts in the museum:
The owner of the tricycle was a child named Shinichi Tetsutani who was riding it at the time when the bombing happened. He was badly burned and had died in the night. His father did not want him to be buried alone in a grave away from home so he buried the tricycle with him. Forty years later, the father transferred Shinichi’s remains and donated the tricycle to the Peace Memorial Museum.
- A Child’s Dress
The dress belonged to a child named Chizuko. She and her mother were waiting for a train when the tragedy happened. They managed to catch a train and survive, however, the mother had fainted and they were taken to a nearby school for help.
- Uniform of a Junior High Student
A tattered uniform is on display in the museum. It was owned by a student named Toshiaki Asahi who was one of the 325 other students and teachers that were exposed to the bomb. He survived the actual bombing and was later found by a neighbor and taken to his home in Kabe-cho. However, due to his serious injuries, he eventually succumbed to death.
- Lunch Box
A lunch box with an uneaten meal portrays the tragic story of Shigeru Orimen, a young boy who studied at Second Hiroshima Prefectural Junior High School, and died in the calamitous explosion. His body was found by his mother with the lunch box clutched under the stomach.
- Water Bottle
A water bottle serves as a reminder of how the parents of Tesuo Kitabayashi, then a 12 year old child, tried to help him with first-aid treatment. However, his injuries were too severe and he died the day after the bombing.
Pay a visit to Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum to view these artifacts up close and learn more about the event.