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Hiroshima Day Peace Vigil
August 6 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pmFree
HIROSHIMA DAY PEACE VIGIL
Tuesday, August 6th 5:30 – 6:30 pm
corner of State & Main Streets
8 large “Abolish Nuclear Weapons” banners will be flown
and origami peace cranes will be handed out to passersby.
Sponsors: Doylestown Friends Meeting, The Peace Center
Contact: Doylestown Friends Meeting
On Tuesday, August 6th, Doylestown Friends Meeting will be joined by area peace groups including Langhorne’s The Peace Center in solemnly commemorating the first use of nuclear bombs in war on that date in 1945. The vigil will be held at the corner of Main & State Streets in Doylestown. Eight large “Abolish Nuclear Weapons” banners will be flown, and origami peace cranes will be handed out to passersby.
Community members are invited to make & bring paper peace cranes to distribute. Contributions of folded cranes can also be dropped off in advance. Collection boxes will be placed at Siren Records and Dragonfly Yoga during the week of July 30 – August 3.
The borough’s Quakers have observed this vigil annually since August 6, 1985, when two nuclear bombing survivors (known as hibakusha in Japanese) visited Doylestown and shared their first-hand experiences at Hiroshima & Nagasaki. Hundreds of county residents gathered at the courthouse to hear them; an art exhibit and church bell-ringing ceremony were also a part of the commemorative events.
The 1985 visit was arranged by the Bucks Alliance for Nuclear Disarmament and The Shadow Project. Disarmament activists spent the night before the August 6 event stenciling shadows on sidewalks in commemoration of the civilian lives lost to nuclear bombs 40 years before. Morning Call reporter Chuck Ayers wrote in his account of the hibakusha visit to Doylestown: “The symbols were chosen to portray the silhouettes of the Japanese who were literally vaporized by the heat and radioactive rays from the atomic blasts – their shadows etched on sidewalks, streets and steps of the two blighted cities.”
The 1985 Morning Call article also noted that anti-nuclear activists at the time were making a national push for the first comprehensive test ban treaty. Although adopted in 1996, the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) never went into force. The United States and 7 other countries (China, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, North Korea, and Pakistan) have refused to ratify it to this day:
In response to the failure of the CTBT, disarmament advocates in response undertook a years-long process to develop and successfully pass the Global Nuclear Ban Treaty at the United Nations. In July of last year, 122 United Nations countries pledged to ratify a legally binding and absolute ban on the possession & use of nuclear weapons.
Attendees at the August 6 vigil in Doylestown — 73 years after Hiroshima and 33 after this local observance began — will continue to call on elected leaders in the U.S. to hasten the day when all nations denuclearize.
Doylestown Friends Meeting respectfully request that signage at this rally
be strictly focused on the topic of abolishing nuclear weapons.