August 6, 1945: Atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima

The Japanese began the war from the air at Pearl Harbor. They have been repaid with many fold. And the end is not yet.

It is an atomic bomb. It is a harnessing of the basic power of the universe. The force from which the sun draws its power has been loosed against those who brought war to the Far East.

This is part of a statement released by President Truman on Aug. 6, 1945 – the day an atomic bomb with “the power of 20,000 tons of TNT” was dropped on Hiroshima.

The Herald went to press later that day with a series of stories about the event. Here’s an excerpt from one:

An atomic bomb which looses pent-up forces of the universe equivalent to more than 20,000 tons of TNT and represent on of the greatest scientific advances of history has been dropped on Japan.

President Truman told today of the terrific destructive power packed into the missile which was dropped sixteen hours ago on Hiroshima, an important Japanese Army base. His statement … said the bomb ‘added a new and revolutionary increase in destruction’ on the Japanese homeland.

This awful bomb is the answer, President Truman’s statement said, to Japan’s failure to heed the Potsdam demand that she surrender unconditionally at once or face utter destruction.

Read more from the Aug. 6, 1945, issue of The Herald in our collection of historic front pages.

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Katharine Graham, then CEO and chairwoman of the board of The Washington Post Co., looks over a copy of The Daily Herald with Larry Hanson, then The Herald’s publisher, during her visit to Everett on Sept. 20, 1984. The Washington Post Co. owned The Herald from 1978 until 2013. (Herald archives)
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