The Japanese city of Hiroshima (???, Hiroshima-shi?) is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture, and the largest city in the Chugoku region of western Honshu, the largest of Japan's islands. Geographical location 34°23'07?N, 132°27'19?E (City Hall). It is most known throughout the world as the first city in history subjected to nuclear warfare with the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II.
Hiroshima gained municipality status on April 1, 1889 and was designated on April 1, 1980 by government ordinance. The city's current mayor is Tadatoshi Akiba who assumed the office on February 23, 1999.********Hiroshima was founded in 1589, on the coast of the Seto Inland Sea, and became a major urban center during the Meiji period. The city is located on the broad, flat delta of the Ota River, which has 7 channel outlets dividing the city into six islands which project into Hiroshima Bay. The city is almost entirely flat and only slightly above sea level. Hiroshima was founded by Mori Motonari as his capital. About a half century later, after the Battle of Sekigahara, his grandson and the leader of the West Army Mori Terumoto was on the losing side. The winner Tokugawa Ieyasu deprived Mori Terumoto of most of his fiefs including Hiroshima and gave Aki province to another daimyo who had supported him.
Finally Asano was appointed the daimyo of this area and Hiroshima served as the capital of Hiroshima han during the Edo period. After the han was abolished the city became the capital of Hiroshima prefecture.*************On August 6, 1945 the nuclear weapon Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima by the crew of the Enola Gay, directly killing an estimated 80,000  people and completely destroying approximately 68% of the city's buildings. In the following months, an estimated 60,000 more people died from injuries or radiation poisoning.Since 1945, several thousand more hibakusha have died of illnesses caused by the bomb. After the nuclear attack, Hiroshima was rebuilt and the closest surviving building to the location of the bomb's detonation was designated the Genbaku Dome (?????) or "Atomic Bomb Dome", a part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. The city government continues to advocate the abolition of all nuclear weapons.*************Hiroshima was rebuilt after the war, with new modern buildings rising all over the city. Several US civic leaders and scholars were consulted about the rebuilding plan. In 1949, Hiroshima was proclaimed a City of Peace by the Japanese parliament, at the initiative of its mayor, Shinzo Hamai (b. 1905–d. 1968). As a result, the city of Hiroshima received more international attention as a desirable location for holding international conferences on peace as well as social issues. As part of that effort, the Hiroshima Interpreters' and Guide's Association (HIGA) was established in 1992 in order to facilitate translation services for conferences, and the Hiroshima Peace Institute was established in 1998 within the Hiroshima University. In 1994, the city of Hiroshima hosted the Asian Games.
While many other Japanese cities had abandoned their streetcar systems by 1980s (during 60s to 70s, Japanese cities—like British ones—were anxious to get rid of their streetcar systems due to damage to the infrastructure), Hiroshima has retained its streetcar systems. This is because the construction of subway was too expensive for the city to build, as it is located on a delta. During 1960s, Hiroshima Electric Railway, or Hiroden, bought extra streetcars from other Japanese cities. Since most of such street cars retain their original appearance, the streetcar system is called "Moving Museum" by some railroad buffs, although they are now being replaced by newer streetcars. Of four streetcars that survived the war, two of them are still in operation as of July 2006 (Hiroden model 650, Number 651 and 652).**********************Hiroshima's rebuilt castle (nicknamed Rijo, meaning Koi Castle) houses a museum of life in the Edo period. Hiroshima Gokoku Shrine is within the walls of the castle.
Hiroshima is known for its version of okonomiyaki, called "Hiroshima-yaki" or "Hiroshima-fu-okonomiyaki", but just called "Okonomiyaki" there. The Hiroshima version of okonomiyaki is unique for its inclusion of soba or udon noodles.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, which includes the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, brings many visitors from all around the world, especially around the time of the annual commemoration called Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony. And there are Children's Peace Monument and Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims.
Other attractions include Shukkei-en and Mitaki-dera. Festivals include Hiroshima Flower Festival and Hiroshima International Animation Festival.**********Baseball fans immediately recognize the city as the home of the Hiroshima Toyo Carp. Six-time champions of Japan's Central League, the team has gone on to win the Japan Series three times. Sanfrecce Hiroshima is the city's J. League football team.************Mazda Motor Company, now controlled by the Ford Motor Company, is by far Hiroshima's dominant company. Mazda makes many models in Hiroshima for worldwide export, including the popular MX-5/Miata and Mazda RX-8. The Mazda CX-7 is scheduled to be built there, starting in early 2006. Other Mazda factories are in Hofu and Flat Rock, Michigan.*****************
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