Hiroshima City is on the east coast of Japan but more important than this geographical location is its location at the mouth of a delta, where the majestic Ohta River meanders down from higher elevations before branching out, sometimes only to converge again, across the city, before spilling into Hiroshima Harbor. The result is a city that is naturally divided into geographically distinct sections.
The area that visitors first become familiar with is the Hiroshima Station area, a bit northeast of the city center, although the addresses of many of the businesses here indicate "south ward." As you might imagine, this busy area features many businesses intended for tourists...
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But unlike other cities, Hiroshima's past is clouded: It has the unfortunate distinction of being the first city ever destroyed by an atomic bomb. (The second city -- and it is hoped the last -- was Nagasaki, on Kyushu island.)
It happened one clear summer morning, August 6, 1945, at 8:15am, when a B-29 approached Hiroshima from the northeast, passed over the central part of the city, dropped the bomb, and then took off at full speed....