Seventy years after the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, this toddler's tricycle stands as a bitter reminder of the horrors of nuclear warfare. The story behind it was published as a children's book by Hiroshima survivor Tatsuharu Kodama in 1995. "Shin's Tricycle" is about a 3-year-old boy named Shinichi Tetsutani, who died in the attack. His father buried him with this trike -- his favorite toy. This and other fascinating artifacts have been preserved by the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum.
Nobuo Tetsutani/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Shirley Temple doll —
Chieko Suetomo loved this Shirley Temple doll that her father got her when he was in the United States. When he returned to their destroyed house a few days after the attack, she found the doll laying on what was left of the floor. The doll's once-beautiful light-peach clothes were blackened from head to toe, but Chieko continued to treasure the doll after the war. She eventually donated it to the museum.
Chieko Suetomo/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Lunch box —
Shigeru Orimen was a first-year student at Second Hiroshima Prefectural Junior High School. A few days after the bombing, his mother found Orimen's body with this lunch box clutched under his stomach. The bomb had turned his lunch into nothing but charred remains.
Shigeko Orimen/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
A burned shirt —
The bomb detonated while Shigezo Kono was at work at a city electric company. Two days later, his older brother found him lying dead, face down beside his desk. He brought home this burned shirt, which had been sewn by Shigezo's wife, Toshi. When she saw it, she knew her husband was dead.
Toshi Kono/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
A student's armband —
Toshiaki Asahi was a 13-year-old high school student who was working at the time of the attack and wearing this armband. Despite serious burns, he managed to make his way through fires sparked by the bomb. He climbed up a riverbank and escaped to the outskirts of the city. There he was found by an acquaintance and carried home. Three days later, he told family members, "Thank you for all you've done," and died in his mother's lap.
Teruichi Asahi/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Steel helmet —
Teacher Ryo Fukumaru was escorting students to a factory at the time of the attack. He was badly burned over most of his body -- except his head, which was shielded by this helmet. He was able to walk back to his school before he collapsed. Two days later, he was carried on a stretcher back to his family. At first, because of his burns, relatives failed to recognize him. He struggled to heal for more than six months. When he recovered, Fukumaru was left with scars covering most of his body. He was eventually able to return to work.
Ryo Fukumaru/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
School bag —
On the day of the attack, Mitsuko Kawamura was a 13-year-old high school student. Her sister Yaeko walked through the city searching for her, but never found a body. About a month later, Yaeko found her sister's school bag near the place where Mitsuko was working that day.
Toshio Kawamura/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
When the bomb detonated, Tadayori Kihara was riding his bicycle onto a bridge with this suitcase mounted behind his seat. The blast threw him down on the bridge walkway. His back and arms were so badly burned that most of the skin peeled off. The suitcase bears burns from the bomb's intense heat. Kihara survived and lived 22 more years, treasuring this suitcase before it was donated to the museum.
Tadayori Kihara/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Immediately after the bombing, Tsukushi Nishimura went missing from his workplace. About two weeks later, his remains and his wallet were delivered to his home.
Nishimura family/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Melted coins —
A week after the attack, Kinzo Imura found this clump of melted coins in the burned ruins of a relative's house. This artifact was passed to Imura's nephew, Kazuhiko Ninomiya, who preserved them until donating them to the museum.