The domed building was almost directly below the detonation, which occurred in mid-air, about 2,000 feet (600 meters) above this spot. Residents walk through the streets now surrounded by rubble. And the States wanted to show off that power in order to bring a swift end to World War II. Nearly everything within 1,600 feet of the bomb's blast zone was cremated. On my last visit to the National Archives, I found a number of pre-war and post-war images of Hiroshima, and have gathered them here, a stark reminder of what happened when a nuclear weapon was detonated over a densely-populated area. Shadow of window frame left on fiberboard walls made by the flash of the detonation. #. #, Survivors of the first atomic bomb ever used in warfare await emergency medical treatment in Hiroshima, Japan, on August 6, 1945. Aerial images of Hiroshima before and after the bombing. Pictures showing the Japanese city of Nagasaki before and after it was flattened by the United States’ uranium atomic bomb “Fat Man” reveal the instant devastation following the blast. Just after 8:15 a.m., a flash of blinding light erupted over the city. It's likely that when those sirens rang out on the morning of Aug. 6, 1945, the residents of Hiroshima continued on with their daily routines. A view of destruction in Hiroshima, in the autumn of 1945, across one of the branches of the river … Reserved. This image is often confused as the mushroom cloud that appeared over Hiroshima as the bomb exploded, but it's actually the smoke from the myriad fires raging in the city's center in Hiroshima's aftermath. The United States had little aid to offer. Find the Place You Love. There were also an estimated 40,000 Imperial soldiers stationed there. On August 6, 1945, at 8:15 a.m., the crew of the B-29 bomber Enola Gay dropped the first wartime atomic bomb over Hiroshima, Japan, a bustling regional hub that served as an important military communications center, storage depot and troop gathering area. At 8:15 a.m. on August 6, 1945, an atomic bomb—codenamed Little Boy—detonated 1,900 feet above Hiroshima, Japan. Universal History Archive/UIG via Getty Images. From the book 'Visual History of Nostalgic Station' / Kokusho-kankoukai, U.S. Army via Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum / AP. Footage captured in the aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing. #, Japanese troops rest in the Hiroshima railway station after the atomic bomb explosion. See the harrowing devastation of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in the gallery above. On August 6, 1945, a mushroom cloud billows into the sky about one hour after an atomic bomb was dropped by American B-29 bomber, the Enola Gay, detonating above Hiroshima, Japan. "Where we had seen a clear city two minutes before, we could now no longer see the city," recalled Enola Gay's navigator, Theodore Van Kirk. In this Aug. 6, 1945, file photo, smoke rises around 20,000 feet above Hiroshima, Japan, after the first atomic bomb was dropped. This relatively small harbor was developed as the port for Hiroshima and was one of the principal embarkation depots for the Japanese Army during World War II. Days after its cities had been wiped out, Japan surrendered. FILE - In this Aug. 6, 1945, file photo released by US Air Force, a column of smoke rises 20,000 feet over Hiroshima, western Japan, after the first atomic 5-ton "Little Boy" bomb was released. A Japanese woman and her child, casualties in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, lie on a blanket on the floor of a damaged bank building converted into a hospital and located near the center of the devastated town, on October 6, 1945. Naval history. Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images. The remains of a fire truck devastated by the blast. Fires raged up to four miles from the crash site. The city lies in ruins just days after the bombing. His work has appeared on Earth Touch, Paste, ATI, and countless restaurant napkins. Some photos show light toning. Around 70 percent of the city's buildings collapsed. October 4, 1945. Wooden houses line the bank of the Otagawa, with traditional Japanese river boats in the foreground. October 4, 1945. Only the skeletons of a few buildings fortified for earthquakes remained standing. #, “Direction of blast” chalk marks and outlines of the feet of a victim caught in the explosion. Meanwhile, because ground zero happened to be above a hospital, many of the city's doctors and nurses were killed or injured in the blast. Aerial view of the Hiroshima aftermath. Hiroshima was one of the few major Japanese cities that had been spared the wrath of United States airstrikes, though air-raid sirens sounded nearly every morning anyway. We want to hear what you think about this article. Post office savings bank, Hiroshima. The force of the explosion was estimated by a team of British scientists to be one-tenth the power of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 during World War II. "We could see smoke and fires creeping up the sides of the mountains.". Archival footage of the dropping of Little Boy and the Hiroshima aftermath. I want to receive updates from The Atlantic about new products and offerings. The aftermath in Hiroshima following the detonation of the first atomic bomb used in warfare was also unprecedented, which made it all the more difficult for its citizens to rebuild. At 8:15am on 6 August 1945, a 4,400kg nuclear bomb nicknamed Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima … TheAtlantic.com Copyright (c) 2021 by The Atlantic Monthly Group. Also, as it had so far been spared bombing and airstrikes, the full effects of the atomic bomb itself could be studied. 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