Once-classified images of atomic destruction at Hiroshima are on display in an exhibition titled Hiroshima: Ground Zero 1945 at the International Center of Photography (ICP), New York.
After the nuclear attacks in August 1945, US President Truman dispatched members of the USSBS to Japan to survey damage. The Survey’s Physical Damage Division photographed, analyzed, and evaluated the atomic bomb’s impact on the structures surrounding the Hiroshima blast site, designated “Ground Zero.” The findings of the USSBS provided essential information to American architects and civil engineers as they debated the merits of bomb shelters and revised construction techniques.
The photographs in this exhibition once belonged to Robert L. Corsbie, an executive officer of the Physical Damage Division, who later worked for the Atomic Energy Commission. An architectural engineer and expert on the effects of the atomic bomb himself, he used what he learned from the structural analyses and these images to promote civil defense architecture in the U.S.
The exhibition, open at the International Center of Photography, 1133 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street, New York, until August 28, 2011, will include approximately 60 contact prints and photographs as well as the secret 1947 United States Strategic Bombing Survey report. It is accompanied by a 248 page, soft bound catalogue with essays by John W. Dower, Adam Harrison Levy and David Monteyne.