Children's Peace Monument

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Hiroshima Children's Peace Memorial
Type Children's Memorial for Child Victims of Nuclear and conventional War
Location Hiroshima, Japan
Coordinates 34°23′39″N 132°27′10″E / 34.39414°N 132.45277°E / 34.39414; 132.45277Coordinates: 34°23′39″N 132°27′10″E / 34.39414°N 132.45277°E / 34.39414; 132.45277
Created May 5, 1958
Status Open all year
Website Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
Children dedicating origami cranes to the monument

The Children's Peace Monument (原爆の子の像 Genbaku no Ko no Zō?, lit. "Atomic Bomb Children Statue") is a monument for peace to commemorate Sadako Sasaki and the thousands of child victims of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.

Overview[edit]

The monument is located in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, itself in the city of Hiroshima. Designed by native artists Kazuo Kikuchi and Kiyoshi Ikebe, the monument was built using money derived from a fund-raising campaign by Japanese school children including Sadako's classmates, with the main statue entitled "Atomic Bomb Children" being unveiled on May 5, the Japanese Children's Day holiday. Sadako is immortalized at the top of the statue, where she holds a crane. Thousands of origami cranes from all over the world are offered around the monument on a daily basis, with ancient Japanese tradition holding that one who folds a thousand cranes can have one wish granted. They serve as a sign that the children who make them and those who visit the statue desire a world without nuclear war, having been tied to the statue by the story that Sadako died from radiation-induced leukemia after folding just under a thousand cranes, wishing for world peace. However, an exhibit which appeared in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum stated that by the end of August, 1955, Sadako had achieved her goal and continued to fold more cranes. Unfortunately, her wish was not granted; she died of the leukemia on October 25, 1955.

Beneath the main structure lies a bronze crane that works as a wind chime when pushed against a traditional peace bell from which it is suspended, the two pieces having been donated by Nobel Laureate in Physics Hideki Yukawa.

At the base of the monument is a black marble slab on which is inscribed in Japanese:

これはぼくらの叫びです これは私たちの祈りです 世界に平和をきずくための
Kore wa bokura no sakebi desu. Kore wa watashitachi no inori desu. Sekai ni heiwa o kizuku tame no.
This is our cry, this is our prayer: for building peace in the world.

Sister statue[edit]

The monument inspired a youth-funded and designed sister statue in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA, in the state where "Little Boy", the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, was built. The sister statue was dedicated in 1995, the 50th anniversary of the bombings.[1]

See also[edit]

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