Universal Heritage
A-bomb Dome In 1995, fifty years after the bombing, the A-bomb Dome was designated as a national historic site. Then, in 1996, it became a World Heritage. Many people have supported the preservation of the Dome, and it is now a shared heritage of humankind.

* Location: 1-10 Ote-machi, Naka-ku
* Distance from hypocenter: 160 meters
* Name at time of bombing: Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall
* Structure/number of stories: Brick, three stories
* Completed: 1915
* Name when completed: Hiroshima Prefectural Commercial Exhibition Hall
* Current status: World Heritage, A-bomb Dome

Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall seen from the west end of Motoyasu Bridge.
1933. Taken by Masao Okuno / Courtesy of Katsuhiko Okuno

Military demand associated with the Sino-Japanese War and Russo-Japanese War helped Hiroshima's economy thrive. The Hiroshima Prefectural Commercial Exhibition Hall, which opened in 1915, was designed by Czech architect Jan Letzel. Its name was changed to the Hiroshima Prefectural Products Exhibition Hall in 1921, and finally to the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall in 1933. In addition to introducing products from Hiroshima Prefecture and nearby prefectures, the building was used to promote local commerce and culture, serving also as a museum and art gallery. As the war intensified, however, emphasis shifted to the promotion of industry. In 1944, operations were discontinued, and the building became the offices of the Interior Ministry’s Chugoku-Shikoku Public Works, the Hiroshima District Lumber Control Corporation, and other national and municipal organizations, and regulated associations.
Being close to the hypocenter, the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall was heavily damaged and completely burned by the atomic bomb. Everyone in the building died instantly. However, because the blast struck from nearly directly above, the building did not collapse, leaving the dome's iron frame and thus its symbolic appearance.

Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall two weeks after the bombing. August 20, 1945.
Taken by Masami Oki / Courtesy of the Association of the Photographers of the Atomic (Bomb) Destruction of Hiroshima

First stage of preservation work
From April to August of 1967, Hiroshima City carried out the first stage of preservation work on the A-bomb Dome. Strong adhesive cement was poured inside of the brick walls and the interior was supported by steel framework at key points.
July 1967
Courtesy of Hiroshima Municipal Archives

A-bomb Dome: visited by people from throughout the world. May 2008.