Kids in Hiroshima live in one of the most famous cities in all Japan. In fact, Hiroshima is one of the most famous cities in all the world.
Hiroshima, which is almost 500 years old, is the capital city of Hiroshima Prefecture. A Japanese prefecture is very similar to a state in the United States.
Japan is made up of hundreds of islands, many of them quite small. The city of Hiroshima is near the southern tip of the largest of all the nation’s islands and the big island itself is called Japan.
In the 1940s, during World War II, Hiroshima was a very important port city to Japan and it was where Japanese army and marine headquarters were located. The military bases held large stores of arms, ammunition, and other supplies the Japanese soldiers needed and the city’s port made it possible to ship these supplies out quickly and easily.
The US military and its allies were at war against Japan and conducted air raids that dropped bombs on many cities in Japan, including Tokyo, which is the national capital city. The US military also wanted to destroy Hiroshima, since it was so important to Japan’s military forces, but they didn’t drop an ordinary bomb there.
Instead, the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, a Monday morning, was the first atomic bomb ever used in the world. This nuclear bomb was named Little Boy and an airplane named the Enola Gay dropped it. The plane’s pilot named his airplane after his mother.
Nuclear bombs are more devastating than all others and many, many Japanese people were killed and injured when Little Boy exploded over Hiroshima. Almost all the buildings in the city were destroyed, too.
Because it was more destructive than anything ever seen before, the bombing in Hiroshima gave the Japanese military leaders reason to surrender, a move that helped end World War II.
Today, Hiroshima has become one of the most modern and peaceful cities in the world and is home to more than a million people. Shortly after World War II, in 1949, Hiroshima’s mayor named it a City of Peace and the Japanese government supported his proclamation.
As an official City of Peace, Hiroshima has become famous as an important location for world leaders to meet to discuss peace and other social issues that affect the everyday lives of kids and their parents everywhere.