Let's look at the Special Exhibit
From the rooftop of the new building of Chugoku shinbun

It was the first clear day in the several since my arrival in Hiroshima. As I had planned the day before, first thing in the morning I climbed to the rooftop watchtower of the Hiroshima Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Hiroshima Prefectural Commerce Association) to take panoramic photos of the burnt plain of the city.
"Unbelievable," I found myself mumbling. I turned and turned, trying to take in the spectacle. "I'm not dreaming. This is for real."

From Approaching Ground Zero (Iwanami Junior Paperbacks), by Shigeo Hayashi

Shigeo Hayashi

Shigeo Hayashi

October 1945
In front of the approach to Hiroshima Gokoku Shrine
Photo by Tsuneo Tago


Shigeo Hayashi was a still photographer for an academic survey team of the Special Committee for the Investigation of A-bomb Damage organized by the Scientific Research Council of Japan (under the Ministry of Education). Hayashi arrived in Hiroshima on September 30, 55 days after the bombing.
The Tokyo-born Hayashi came to Hiroshima as an investigative photographer. His emotions as he stood in the city center are crystallized in the word: "Unbelievable." Looking at his panoramic photos, we can almost hear him mumble.
On August 6, 2000, Shigeo Hayashi entrusted to Hiroshima City 232 negatives and original prints. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum has since managed and stored the film in our collection, examining the negatives and entering them into our database.
Having completed that process, we have selected 60 of Hayashi's 232 photos for this exhibition, the purpose of which is to introduce the work of one of the most prominent photographers to record the devastation of Hiroshima.

Filming at the hypocenter

Filming at the hypocenter

Location: Saiku-machi (now, Ote-machi 1 chome)

Survey team members measure residual radiation in the ruins of Shima Hospital (the hypocenter), as Japan Film Corporation staff film them.

The survey team shortly after arrival in Hiroshima

Location: Moto-machi
Distance from hypocenter: approx. 160m

The survey team members gathered on the approach to Hiroshima Gokoku Shrine are facing the hypocenter.