The Mushroom Cloud over Hiroshima, 6 August 1945 8 x 10 in (20 x 26 cm) 1

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Lot 293
The Mushroom Cloud over Hiroshima, 6 August 1945
8 x 10 in (20 x 26 cm) 1

Sold for US$ 6,250 inc. premium
The Mushroom Cloud over Hiroshima, 6 August 1945
Vintage photograph taken from the town of Yoshiura on the other side of the mountain north of Hiroshima, and titled by Robert Lewis "Hiroshima-3 min AFTER Detonation 9:18 Aug 6 1945." A large format (8 x 10 in) black and white press photograph, slightly blow up from a wider shot, the image taped onto a white sheet of paper, with punch holes for filing on left side through the backing paper, but not affecting photograph. Verso blank.
Provenance: Robert A. Lewis, co-Pilot, Enola Gay, 6 August 1945; and then as a gift to Steven K. Lewis.

This amateur photograph came to light soon after the bombing and was circulated widely in the press. The small spots on the cloud are caused by the excessive radiation on the negative, almost destroying the film. Lewis must have acquired an example from an official file and annotated it for himself. He dated it Tinian time but it was in fact only 8.18 am at Hiroshima. It appears that Lewis made some concerted efforts to find photographs of the bombing of Hiroshima, as to whether he found these and the AEC photographs in a file on Tinian we cannot say, but for 2 months or so he waited around in Tinian giving him ample opportunity to acquire such photographs as they came in.
8 x 10 in (20 x 26 cm) (1)

Saleroom notices

  • Additional Note: This photograph of the Hiroshima mushroom cloud was taken by Harold Agnew from the companion observation plane "The Great Artiste," and not from the town of Yoshiura.
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