The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum contains artefacts that have been donated by victims families and survivors relating to the event of 6th August 1945. In total there are over 120 timepieces held in the vaulted archives. Only a small selection of timepieces are on display as the sheer volume prevents the full collection being visible at any one time. The museum has a digital archive, and the items can be viewed online. A detailed explanation of the artefact is given with details of how the watch came into the museum's possession. Please note the write up is very personal, explaining injuries incurred by the victim. We have taken extracts, for a full description go to the link and enter the artefact number provided.

This online archive is a wonderful tool, but nothing replaces experiencing the Museum first hand. The full collection of watches and other items can be viewed here.

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial, originally the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. Today called the Genbaku Dome, Atomic Bomb Dome or A-Bomb Dome is part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, designated a  UNESCO  World Heritage Site in 1996. The remains of the hall is a memorial to the people killed.

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial, originally the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. Today called the Genbaku Dome, Atomic Bomb Dome or A-Bomb Dome is part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. The remains of the hall is a memorial to the people killed.


Yukimi Dohi museum curator

Yukimi Dohi is one of the museums curators, she has worked in the museum for 8 years. The Buffalo pocket watch she is holding was donated by her great aunt (Watanabe Miyoko) in 1997. Miyoko's father, Watanabe Kojiro (then 44), was exposed to the bomb while serving as leader of a labor service corps team that was demolishing buildings. He sustained severe burns over his entire body, and died on August 16. He was carrying this pocket watch at the time of the bombing. Yukimi only discovered her own connection to the pocket watch whilst she was working inside of the Museum.

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The remains of the wristwatch below was donated by Fusako Okamoto in 2003. Kozue Okamoto (then, 20), was exposed at her building demolition work site. On the afternoon of the 6th, a coworker found her and carried her to the city's outskirts. Kozue was severely burned and was unrecognizable even to her family. Her entire body was red and peeling, except for the band of skin covered by this wristwatch. When she heard, Kozue's mother, Mitsu (then, 62), rushed to her side and nursed her desperately. Kozue died the following day.

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Pocket watch

Donator Kazuo Nikawa

Receiving date 1975/06/28

Distance from hypocenter 1600m

Location Yoshijima, Funairi, Kan-on areas

Kengo Nikawa (then 59) was exposed to the bomb on the way to his assigned building demolition site in the center of the city… He died on August 22. Kengo was never without this watch given him by his son.

(extract from HPMM digital archives #3502-0010)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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Pocket watch

Donator HIRONAKA Masaki

Receiving date 2016/8/2

Mr. Hajime Hironaka (37 years old at the time), the donor's father, was in a train on his way to work when the bomb exploded. He was burned by the heat rays, and shards of window glasses of the train shattered by the blast were stuck in many places on his back. He dipped his body in the river to alleviate his extreme pain, and struggled to go home…

(Digital archive #3502-0047)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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Wristwatch

Donator Kaname Yatsuzuka

Receiving date1959/05/30

Distance from hypocenter 1250m

Location Moto-machi, Hakushima areas

Kaname Yatsuzuka (then, 43) was in charge of the repair shop at the Chugoku Military District Weaponry Division and experienced the bombing at the repair shop in Moto-machi… Having lost 58 of his subordinates, Kaname went to the charred ruins of the repair shop every day to dig up the remains and possessions of the personnel in his charge and deliver them to their next of kin.
These objects were preserved since their owners are unknown.

(extract taken from HPMM digital archive #3501-0005)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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Wristwatch


Donator HAMADA Ryoko

Receiving date 2014/9/3

Location Kokutaiji, Senda areas

Hajime Hamada (then, 17) was exposed to the atomic bomb on the second floor of his work place, the Chugoku Power Distribution Company. He was hurled to the ground by the blast… He died on the evening of August 19.
(From the account of Ryoko, a younger sister of Hajime and Michiko)
I've always seen my parents lamenting the death of my brother and sister, and not a day has passed without thinking of them… ."

(extract taken from HPMM digital archives #3501-0050)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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Clock

Donator MOZUMI Michiko

Receiving date 014/8/5

Distance from hypocenter 1650m

…collected by Fumiko Nagai (then, 23) in the burnt-out ruins of her house.
Fumiko was trapped under the house, which had collapsed due to the blast…
Her husband Yukio (then, 24), a member of the Akatsuki Corps communication squadron, was exposed to the bomb at an elementary school in Yaga-machi. Yukio, miraculously escaping injury, was worried about Fumiko and obtained permission to return home. The city center was burning fiercely. Yukio was finally reunited with Fumiko at his uncle's home in Ushita-machi on the morning of August 8. Fumiko fled far away immediately after the bombing and had been looking after the injured all night long. Fumiko suffered poor health for some time afterward, but she could gradually get well. She kept this item very carefully until the day she died, but she rarely talked about those days.

(Digital archive #1208-0021)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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Wall Clock

Donator Kuwami Yoshida

Receiving date1991/07/04

Distance from hypocenter 2880m

Kiyoshi Shima was exposed at home with his wife and child. They were trapped under the collapsed building. Kiyoshi managed to crawl out… Hearing from Kiyoshi, who was in a state of shock, his colleagues headed for his home, still hoping to save the family. They were repelled by the fierce flames. Kiyoshi gave this clock, stopped at the moment of explosion, to his friend Yoshida, for helping him.

(extract taken from HPMM digital archives #1208-0008)

© Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


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