This may look like just another one of my streetcar photos, but unlike the streetcars of New Orleans, the ones in Hiroshima have some deep meaning. As most of you know, Hiroshima is famous as the first city to be leveled by an atomic bomb. Of course the extensive streetcar system, along with the rest of the city was badly damaged. According to this article, of the 123 streetcars, 108 were destroyed as well as much of the tracks.
In three days, however, the Hiroshima Electric Railway was able to get the trains running again, becoming a key symbol of hope for a devastated city. Apparently, there are still two streetcars in service that survived the bombing. This photo I shot is certainly one of the older trains, but is not one of the originals. Today, with 21.8 miles of track and 271 streetcars, it’s the busiest streetcar service in Japan.
I only had two days and one night in Hiroshima. During this very short stay, I wanted to see two places. Certainly, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, Museum and the A-Bomb Dome complex. But also, contrasting against the tragic history, a beautiful nearby island called Miyajima. The two sights together form a yin and yang of contrast. Of destruction and peace. Of urban grit and beautiful nature.
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