Paper Cranes and the Children's Peace Monument

Visitors to Peace Memorial Park see brightly colored paper cranes everywhere. These paper cranes come originally from the ancient Japanese tradition of origami or paper folding, but today they are known as a symbol of peace. They are folded as a wish for peace in many countries around the world. This connection between paper cranes and peace can be traced back to a young girl named Sadako Sasaki, who died of leukemia ten years after the atomic bombing.

Sadako was two years old when she was exposed to the A-bomb. She had no apparent injuries and grew into a strong and healthy girl. However, nine years later in the fall when she was in the sixth grade of elementary school (1954), she suddenly developed signs of an illness. In February the following year she was diagnosed with leukemia and was admitted to the Hiroshima Red Cross Hospital. Believing that folding paper cranes would help her recover, she kept folding them to the end, but on October 25, 1955, after an eight-month struggle with the disease, she passed away.

Sadako's death triggered a campaign to build a monument to pray for world peace and the peaceful repose of the many children killed by the atomic bomb. The Children's Peace Monument that stands in Peace Park was built with funds donated from all over Japan. Later, this story spread to the world, and now, approximately 10 million cranes are offered each year before the Children's Peace Monument.

Sending paper cranes
Anyone may place paper cranes to the Children's Peace Monument in Peace Memorial Park. However, if you are unable to come to the park, we will be happy to offer your cranes to the monument on your behalf. Please send your cranes to the following address. In addition, we would like to enter your name and message for peace into the Paper Crane Database. In this way, your desire for peace will be recorded for posterity. For this purpose, please fill out this registration form and send it back to us with your paper cranes.

Peace Promotion Division
The City of Hiroshima
1-5 Nakajima-cho Naka-ku,
Hiroshima 730-0811 Japan

Paper Crane Database

Sadako and the Paper Cranes --Message of Life Transcending Time
Click here for detailed information from the special exhibit about Sadako Sasaki that was on display in the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum from July to December 2001.

Children's Peace Monument
The Children's Peace Monument is also called the "Tower of a Thousand Cranes", for many thousands of folded paper cranes are offered there all through the year. The origin of the monument can be traced back more than four decades.

Back to Devotion to the Cause of Peace

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