++ Aioi Bridge ++
Aioi Bridge's Picture   It is said that the Aioi Bridge was the target of the atomic bombing because of its unique T-shaped bridge. The 30 cm thick floor of the bridge heaved upwards because of the powerful blast pressure that bounced off the river below. It was heavily damaged. After the war, it was temporarily repaired and used. It was reconstructed in 1983.

(Photo : Katsumi Sasaki)

++ Peace Clock Tower ++
tokei   The Peace Clock Tower was constructed by the Hiroshima Rijo Lions Club in 1967. It was the year when the preservation work of the A-bomb Dome was carried out. The lower twisted part of the tower symbolizes agony of the victims. Every morning at 8:15 a.m., the time when the bomb exploded the Clock Tower chimes to the world, vigorously appealing " No More Hiroshima."

(Photo:Akemi Satoda)

++ Motoyasu River ++
Motoyasu River   At the time of the atomic bomb explosion, people were severely burned. To heal their pain, large numbers of people jumped into the Motoyasu River. Many of these people were seen floating down in all of Hiroshima's rivers. In those days of 1945 these waters were filled with blood and bodies.

  Every year on the evening of August 6th, lanterns are floated downstream to console the souls of the victims. Brightly colored lanterns have the names of the victims and are placed on the river by families, friends and visitors.

  Today thousands of people flock to the Peace Park to witness this ritual that symbolizes the spirits crossing the sea from this earth to the spiritual realm, guided by the lights of candles.

(Photo : Katsumi Sasaki)

++ Children's Peace Monument ++
Children's Peace Monument   The Children's Peace Monument is also called the Tower of a Thousand Cranes. This monument is dedicated to a girl called Sadako Sasaki and other children killed by the atomic bomb.

  Many thousands of paper cranes are sent to the monument from all over Japan and the world. Japanese children from all across the country visit the park on peace education school trips and bring paper cranes and other handmade peace-related materials to place at the foot of the monument.

  There is a moving story behind those paper cranes. Have you ever heard of the story of Sadako Sasaki? Her story has touched the hearts of many people around the world.

  When she was two years old, she was exposed to the atomic bomb at a distance of 2km from the hypocenter. At that time she had no external wounds or burns. She was a healthy, active girl until the age of 12, and then she suddenly developed leukemia.

  While she was in the hospital, she started folding paper cranes hoping for recovery because of a popular belief that folding a thousand paper cranes will make one's wishes come true. In Japan, cranes are a symbol of longevity. Her classmates took turns visiting her at hospital almost every day and folded some cranes.

  Though they reached the goal, it didn't bring her good health. Instead of being discouraged, however, she tried to make another thousand paper cranes. She kept folding them until the very last day.

  Her classmates were terribly shocked by her death and were deeply impressed with her patience and courage. They decided to erect a monument to comfort Sadako's soul and express their desire for peace.

  The monument was built with donations received from all over Japan and also from foreign countries. The monument was unveiled on Children's Day, May 5, 1958.

  The words written by a junior high school student are inscribed on a granite block.

  This is our cry.
  This is our prayer.
  For building peace in this world.

(Photo:Akemi Satoda)

++ Ruins of Jisenji / Atomic Bombed Gravestone ++
haka   Jisenji temple stood on a site only 200 meters from the hypocenter.

  During the construction of the Peace Memorial Park, earth was laid to elevate and flatten all the park land except for this spot. The original ground level is shown here. This used to be the part of the cemetery belonging to Jisenji Temple. This is the gravestone of Kunai Okamoto, a senior statesman of the Asano clan, the major clan in Hiroshima during the Edo period.

  The top of the gravestone was blown off and destroyed by the tremendous blast.

(Photo : Katsumi Sasaki)