The memory lives on

Hiroshima Travel Blog

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The top of the Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims

I walk back from the station towards the place I am staying. On my way I pass the Peace Memorial Park and I decide to spend a bit of time in the Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims. The hall is very different from the museum. The memorial hall is not intended to be a museum of the events leading up to the nuclear explosion or the aftermath. Instead the memorial hall is exactly what the name says it is - a place for remembrance and reflection. And you got the option of readying or listening to some of the firsthand accounts of the events. 

 

The hall is underground and I walk down through a spiraling path down below. The path end in a big hall with pictures of Hiroshima around the bombing. The walls in the halls are covered by small tiles - in total a bit more than 140.000 tiles - which correspond to the initial number of casualties of the bombing. Though the exact number dead is unknown because most of the official records of Hiroshima city were destroyed in the explosion and the fires which followed it.

 

As I leave the hall I get into a room with a wall covered with 8 monitors constantly showing 18 photos each. The photos are of those victims which have been identified and of whom there is an existing photo. The photos are of young and old, men and women, and they seem to go on forever and ever. The photos are not accompanied by any information but the names of the people killed in alphabetical order without any distinction between Japanese and foreigner.

 

I go into the next room where there is a display with survivors telling the stories of what happened on the day of the explosion and how their friends and family had been killed during the blast or in the days following it as a result of burns or radiation sickness. If you wish you can also search for information of the people killed in the explosion - but considering I have no knowledge of any of the victims this is hardly relevant in my case and I decide to leave the memorial hall.

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The top of the Peace Memorial Hall…
The top of the Peace Memorial Hal…
Chinese parasol tree exposed to th…
Chinese parasol tree exposed to t…
Chinese parasol tree exposed to th…
Chinese parasol tree exposed to t…
The walk down to the main hall
The walk down to the main hall
Pictures of Hiroshima around the t…
Pictures of Hiroshima around the …
The tiles on the wall - total of a…
The tiles on the wall - total of …
Pictures of those who died due to …
Pictures of those who died due to…
Pictures of those who died due to …
Pictures of those who died due to…
Pictures of those who died due to …
Pictures of those who died due to…
Names of those who died
Names of those who died
Peace boulevard
Peace boulevard
Peace boulevard
Peace boulevard
Hiroshima
photo by: mmeymey